Italy’s populist government is divided over a high-speed train line between Italy and France. Part of the coalition demanding the project be scrapped.

Business leaders are expected to lead a rally on November 10 urging Rome to forge ahead with the €8.6bn tunnel through the Alps for the line linking Turin to Lyon, which has already been partially dug.

As reported by the Agence France-Presse (AFP), the rail link will reduce travel time between Milan and Paris from almost seven hours to just over four.

The line has been criticised by environmentalists. Also, the anti-establishment Five Stars Movement (M5S) argues it’s a misuse of public funds.

According to AFP, the contested project is for a 57km long tunnel between the Susa Valley and Maurienne Valley.

The bill for the tunnel is being split 40%, 35% and 25% between the European Union, Italy and France.

French Transport Minister Elisabeth Borne promised in parliament earlier in the week that “the government’s determination to build this infrastructure”.