ROME (Reuters) - Industry Minister Carlo Calenda said on Wednesday that Italy had plenty of work to do before it could hold an election, making clear his opposition to an early vote in the autumn of this year.
Speaking at the assembly of employers' lobby Confindustria, Calenda said that before elections Italy needed to draw up new voting rules, pass a 2018 budget and recapitalise its ailing banks.
"We have to arrive at elections at the right time ... with an electoral law that gives, if not the certainty, at least a reasonable probability that a government can be formed afterwards," Calenda said.
Elections are due by May 2018, but there has been frequent speculation that they could be held in the autumn of this year.
(Reporting by Giuseppe Fonte, writing by Gavin Jones)