Xi Jinping

[News] Italy-China, the new perspectives born from the visit of Xi Jinping

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and Chinese President Xi Jinping signed the important memorandum of agreement between Italy and China on the “Belt and Road Initiative” (BRI), the ambitious project launched in 2013 by Xi also called “New Silk Road”.

Following the signing, the news has also been widely reported in China. In fact, the memorandum, which is not legally binding, has a strong symbolic value.
Let’s see what it is all about.

The key areas of the memorandum

The agreement speaks, in particular, of six sectors in which the two countries intend to establish new and greater synergies:

  1. dialogue on policies for greater connectivity between countries;
  2. transport, logistics and infrastructure;
  3. removal of barriers to trade and investment;
  4. financial cooperation;
  5. connectivity between people;
  6. cooperation in environmental issues.

For further information, the pdf of the memorandum can be downloaded here.

The political situation that derives from this signature is predictably tense especially with the United States, whose fundamental node remains that of telecommunications.

29 Agreements on the plate

On the sidelines of the signature most important from the political point of view, the membership of the BRI, 29 agreements were signed: 10 commercial agreements between companies – including those on the ports of Trieste and Genoa – and 19 institutional agreements.

As per transport sector, as already mentioned, the infrastructures of the ports of Genoa and Trieste are expected to be strengthened, thanks agreements with Chinese companies such as China communications construction company (CCCC) and China Merchants. Therefore, the aim of two seaports would be to channel larger amounts of trade flows between East and West.

The intentions on the port of Palermo are still unclear, which could be the subject of further investments.

For the future, therefore, various developments are expected in relations between the two countries, between new opportunities and the need to balance interests.