Emma Marcegaglia, president of Italy's oil and gas giant Eni on Wednesday called for a new government "that is capable of counting in Europe", taking forward reforms and deepening European integration.
"Annual European growth is at 2.5 percent. Of course we need to do more but the answer is not sovereignism or nationalism," Marcegaglia told reporters in Brussels.
"We must advance reforms at national level and continue with closer European integration," she said.
"This deeper integration must not just be driven by a single country like Germany or other powerful countries," said Marcegaglia, who headed Italy's main business association Confindustria from 2008-2012.
"On the contrary, Italy must have a government that is capable of counting in Europe too: this is the only way forward," she concluded.
Italy's political parties are currently negotiating alliances after a national election on 4 March produced a hung parliament.
President Sergio Mattarella is due to start his consultations with party leaders in early April, one of whom he will invite to try and form a coalition government.
The strongest contenders for power are the anti-European, anti-migrant League party and the populist, eurosceptic Five-Star Movement.