Enrico Letta said “there may not be a Europe to fix” by 2017 unless there was level playing field for every member state.

He called for greater investment in weaker countries rather than relying on bailouts when their economies tanked, which has previously been the blueprint with Greece.

But he also said he hoped Britain’s withdrawal from the EU would bring greater democratisation of the single currency, adding the UK should not be allowed in the single market if it was unwilling to accept free movement.

Letta was speaking to La Stampa after presenting a report, “Growth and the Euro after Brexit” in Berlin.

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