Accompanying the rise in anti-European sentiment has been another issue that affects Italy acutely: Immigration.
Recent scenes of thousands of migrants trying to get into Europe from the Middle East and beyond, has brought international attention to Europe's increasing struggle to deal with migration. As many as 500,000 migrants have arrived so far this year, according to Europe's border agency, Frontex.
Italy, and particularly its poorer southern regions, have been struggling with an influx of migrants for years, however, and has repeatedly called on its European neighbors for help in the increasingly arduous task of patrolling the Mediterranean and processing the numbers of migrants entering Italy.
The migration "problem" in Italy feeds into many other endemic issues in Italy – as well as highlighting the problem of organized crime, the country's north-south divide.
In Naples, for example, migrants (often illegal) can be seen selling fake goods such as handbags – an industry controlled mainly by the Neapolitan organized criminals, the Camorra.
In fact, criminal gangs such as the Mafia in Sicily, Camorra in Campania and the 'Ndrangheta in Calabria have seen the influx of migrants – and the systems being put in place to receive, process and fund them – as a new source of illicit profits, according to a report in the Financial Times in July.