(Bloomberg) -- Italy’s government is preparing to grant a new three-year term to state lender chief Dario Scannapieco, who was handpicked for the role by ex-Prime Minister Mario Draghi.

Premier Giorgia Meloni has decided to retain Scannapieco at the head of Cassa Depositi e Prestiti SpA — one of the most pivotal posts in her right-wing administration — people familiar with the matter said.

The state lender, known as CDP, plays an outsized role in shaping Italy’s corporate landscape. With around €500 billion ($541 billion) in assets, it dwarfs many of Italy’s listed banks, and owns significant stakes in top companies including oil major Eni SpA, telecommunications company Telecom Italia SpA, shipbuilder Fincantieri SpA, postal operator Poste Italiane SpA and power grid manager Terna SpA. 

A representative for the Rome-based Finance Ministry declined to comment. CDP was not immediately available for comment. 

The appointment of the state lender’s next board will likely be delayed until after June’s European elections, the people said, asking not to be named discussing confidential deliberations. Meloni’s Brothers of Italy party is expected to perform strongly in the vote, which would boost her power within the governing coalition. 

Scannapieco was appointed by Draghi — who headed the European Central Bank before his stint as premier — in 2021. A new term for the CDP chief could be a signal from Meloni as she looks to reassure markets about her government’s economic policy.

The top job at the state lender has taken on even more importance than usual under Meloni’s government, as the premier has pursued a markedly interventionist line on corporate affairs.

Meloni has placed her administration front and center in a wide range of recent deals, from the sale of Telecom Italia’s fixed-line network to the merger of carrier ITA Airways with Germany’s Deutsche Lufthansa AG.

Like many of her predecessors, Meloni has appointed people close to her to lead some of Italy’s state-controlled firms. Her decision to retain Scannapieco could therefore be a signal to markets that she is striking a balance between politics and business continuity.

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