The sinking EU ship: Shock as Italian PM says: 'EU is like the orchestra on the Titanic'
ITALY’S prime minister Matteo Renzi has stunned Brussels by comparing crisis-hit EU bosses as “like the orchestra playing on the Titanic”.
The spirited leader continued his attacks on Brussels chiefs yesterday over their failure to deal with the multiple crises afflicting the 28-member bloc.
Support for the eurosceptic Five Star Movement has grown in Italy, while Mr Renzi has been fighting the eurozone’s strict austerity policies on member state’s budget deficits.
In an interview with Bloomberg, he made the comparison between the EU and a sinking ship but hailed Italy’s own domestic reforms.
He said: “The EU is like the orchestra playing on the Titanic."
“Today we have done reforms and we are in a position to say to EU partners: ‘friends, we can change this wrong, bureaucratic approach.’ ”
He said: “One country is particularly affected by the migration crisis, another one has elections next year, another is focused on the referendum, another country is without a government.
“Italy has not solved all its problems but it has shown in the past two years that everything is possible.”
Mr Renzi’s comments on the health of the EU reflect similar recent statements from various Brussels bosses.
On Wednesday, European Council president Donald Tusk said the current climate in the EU was “like the day before World War One.”
Last week European Parliament president Martin Schulz described how the EU had “more than once come to the brink of catastrophe” over the last 12 months, with Brussels now “operating in permanent crisis mode”.
But European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker has blasted those who comment “on a daily basis” of the “psychodrama where Europe is falling apart little by little”.
Commenting on the threat of Brexit, he told Politico.eu: “Britain has consistently been different and original.
“This happens at a time in which the foundations of European integration may be a bit more shaky, in the economic area but also in the Schengen story.
“This is the very relevant challenge."
He added: “Anyone could say ‘let’s do Brexit, it works’.”
“And since there is a lot of anti-European feeling in many if not all countries, this would provide, indirectly, a very strong weapon to the anti-European feeling in many countries.
“I can imagine a country where there is an anti-European government coming in saying ‘You know want? I want to do a Brexit too.’”