A report in the Gazzetta del Sud claims that Pope Francis has stepped in over plans by German steelmaker Thyssen Krupp to cut jobs at its stainless steel plant in Terni, Italy.

"You don't play with employment," Pope Francis warned the steelmaker during his general audience in St Peter's Square, adding "... and those who take work away for reasons of money and business and to earn more should know that they are depriving people of dignity"

According to the Gazzetta del Sud, "The pope has frequently criticised the ill effects of global capitalism since taking the helm of the Catholic Church last year and called on business and political leaders to do more to create and maintain jobs. He has warned that a form of "wild capitalism" has taken hold in some quarters, to the detriment of many, especially the poor."