ROME - Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti is expected to outline austerity measures aimed at restoring confidence in Italy's strained public finances on Thursday when he goes before the Senate to seek a vote of confidence in his new government.
The former European Commissioner, who took office on Wednesday, will present his program in the Senate at around 1200 GMT before a confidence vote in the evening. He will seek a separate vote of confidence in the lower house on Friday.
With Italy at the heart of the euro zone debt crisis, the measures he announces are unlikely to be enough on their own to rebuild shattered market confidence.
But they will be vital to restoring credibility with international partners who had long lost patience with the repeatedly unfulfilled promises of Monti's flamboyant predecessor Silvio Berlusconi.