Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi is advising young women to follow the money when looking for a partner, saying women like him and “I’m loaded.”
Berlusconi, 73, who was embroiled in a sex scandal last year and is known for his gaffes, also raised eyebrows with a joke about Hitler.
The billionaire businessman was speaking at a Rome convention of the youth wing of his People of Freedom party.
When questioned by one of his Cabinet ministers – a woman – he joked about marriages of convenience, saying women were lining up for him because “I’m a nice guy” and “I’m loaded.”
He also recalled a much criticised TV interview he once gave, when “I said to a girl to look for a wealthy boyfriend. This suggestion is not unrealistic”.
He also claimed women favour older men, thinking that “he’s old. He dies and I inherit.”
Berlusconi was engulfed in a sex scandal last year centring on his purported dalliances with young women, including an escort. His wife Veronica Lario said last year she was seeking a divorce. They are now separated.
The media baron has said he is “no saint” but denied ever paying for sex.