The Honourable
 Silvio Berlusconi


Prime Minister of Italy
Incumbent
Assumed office 
8 May 2008
President Giorgio Napolitano
Preceded by Romano Prodi
In office
11 June 2001 – 17 May 2006
President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi
Deputy Giulio Tremonti
Gianfranco Fini
Marco Follini
Preceded by Giuliano Amato
Succeeded by Romano Prodi
In office
10 May 1994 – 17 January 1995
President Oscar Luigi Scalfaro
Deputy Giuseppe Tatarella
Roberto Maroni
Preceded by Carlo Azeglio Ciampi
Succeeded by Lamberto Dini

Minister of Foreign Affairs
Acting
In office
6 January 2002 – 14 November 2002
Preceded by Renato Ruggiero
Succeeded by Franco Frattini

Minister of Economy and Finance
Acting
In office
3 July 2004 – 16 July 2004
Preceded by Giulio Tremonti
Succeeded by Domenico Siniscalco

Minister of Health
Acting
In office
10 March 2006 – 17 May 2006
Preceded by Francesco Storace
Succeeded by Livia Turco

Member of the Chamber of Deputies of Italy
In office
21 April 1994 – 13 April 2008
Constituency XIX - Campania I

Member of the Chamber of Deputies of Italy
Incumbent
Assumed office 
14 April 2008
Constituency XVIII - Molise

Born 29 September 1936
Milan, Italy
Political party The People of Freedom
Other political
affiliations
Forza Italia
Spouse Carla Dall'Oglio
Veronica Lario
Children Marina Berlusconi
Pier Silvio Berlusconi
Barbara Berlusconi
Eleonora Berlusconi
Luigi Berlusconi
Residence Arcore, Italy
Alma mater University of Milan
Profession Businessperson
Religion Roman Catholicism

It-Silvio_Berlusconi.ogg Silvio Berlusconi is an Italian politician, entrepreneur, real estate and insurance tycoon, bank and media proprietor, sports team owner and songwriter. He is the second longest-serving Prime Minister of the Italian Republic , a position he has held on three separate occasions: from 1994 to 1995, from 2001 to 2006 and currently since 2008. He is the leader of the People of Freedom political movement, a centre-right party he founded in 2009, merging Forza Italia, his own party, with Alleanza Nazionale of Gianfranco Fini and other parties. His victory in the 2008 general elections paved the way for a third mandate in office. As of January 2009, he is the senior G8 leader, the longest-serving current leader of a G8 country.

Berlusconi is the proprietor of three analogue television channels, various digital television channels, as well as some of the larger-circulation national news magazines. Together these account for nearly half the Italian market. He is the founder and major shareholder of Fininvest, which is among the ten largest privately owned companies in Italy and currently operates in media and finance. With Ennio Doris he founded Mediolanum, one of the country's biggest banking and insurance groups. Berlusconi, together with the Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, is the main shareholder of Mediaset, a publicly traded company. He is the owner of the European football club A.C. Milan, which has won a number of national and international trophies under his lead. He wrote AC Milan's anthem with the Italian music producer and pop singer Tony Renis and Forza Italia's anthem with the opera director Renato Serio. With the Neapolitan singer Mariano Apicella he wrote two Neapolitan song albums: Meglio 'na canzone in 2003 and L'ultimo amore in 2006. According to Forbes magazine, Berlusconi is Italy's third richest person, with personal assets worth $9.4 billion in 2008, preceded only by Michele Ferrero and Leonardo del Vecchio.

Berlusconi's political rise was rapid and surrounded by controversy. He was elected as a Member of Parliament for the first time and appointed as Prime Minister following the March 1994 snap parliamentary elections, when Forza Italia gained a relative majority a mere three months after having been officially launched. However, his cabinet collapsed after seven months, due to internal disagreements in his coalition. In the April 1996 snap parliamentary elections, Berlusconi ran for Prime Minister again but was defeated by centre-left candidate Romano Prodi. In the May 2001 parliamentary elections, he was again the centre-right candidate for Prime Minister and won against the centre-left candidate Francesco Rutelli. Berlusconi then formed his second and third cabinets, until 2006.

Berlusconi was leader of the centre-right coalition in the April 2006 parliamentary elections, which he lost by a very narrow margin, his opponent again being Romano Prodi. Less than two years since his 2006 resignation he was re-elected in the snap parliamentary elections of April 2008 and sworn in again as prime minister on 8 May 2008 after the collapse, on 24 January 2008, of Romano Prodi's last government .

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