Italy's battle with Brussels has triggered fears among executives that continental Europe's third biggest economy will soon vote to leave the euro zone.
Italy now has a right-wing populist government at its helm, with much of the power appearing to lie in the hands of interior minister and far-right Lega (League) leader Matteo Salvini.
Euroskepticism operates as a main policy of Italy's new coalition between Lega and the anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S) party. It has criticized European Union (EU) guidelines on immigration, public spending, trade deals, agriculture and sanctions against Russia. The far-reaching discontent has led to suggestions that Italy could exit from the euro zone.