“Conte and Salvini made us China’s pawns, leaving the Silk Road is not enough”

After months of announcements, Italy has officially withdrawn from the so-called “Silk Road” memorandum of understanding signed with China in 2018.

It does this without making exaggerated announcements, in an official memo sent to the Beijing government in recent days.

Dem Lia Quartapelle, deputy chair of the chamber’s Foreign Affairs Committee, explains: “This is an expected exit and one that the Meloni government has not been able to achieve for months. It is the right choice because Italy is preparing to lead the G7 and the country has a strategic relationship with China, sealed by a memorandum of understanding.” It was an anomaly. We are finally getting out of the state of uncertainty that we were put into by the government in 2018. 5 stars under the leadership of the League and Movement”.

What was wrong with this agreement?

“This was an agreement that did not give us any advantage, neither of an economic, political nature, nor in terms of influence on the international stage. In reality, it was a symbolic agreement widely used by Chinese propaganda to say that Italy had entered into spheres of influence: hence zero economic on our part There is too much advantage and too much detriment in relations with our allies”.

In short, the Meloni government saved itself from an embarrassing situation.

“A way out was found that concealed the choice made by the League in 2018; this is a complex thing to manage at the political level. I remember that the person who played a fundamental role in the signature, as some things should not be forgotten. The signing of this agreement was carried out by the Ministry of Economic Development in the League at that time Michele Geraci, undersecretary of , gave the impression. In short, in international relations, as in Europe, one gets the impression that Salvini and Meloni are moving on different paths. Many uncertainties regarding the international position of this right-wing coalition have not been clarified, and the Silk Road was one of them; Meloni’s “It is clear that there are problems that cannot be solved in the short term.”

And tomorrow the summit between Europe and China begins. Is the timing intentional?

“I do not believe that Italy’s exit from the agreement is specifically linked to the Europe-China meeting; we need to fully understand, among other things, the implications and consequences of its more thorny aspects: The meeting takes place during the crisis between Israel and Gaza. Despite all the difficulties we see on the Ukrainian front, without a big horizon could have had diplomatic ramifications, instead I think the timing was dictated by the trips both Meloni and Tajani have taken between China and the United States in recent months.”

Could it be Biden himself who wants Meloni to step up?

“I think the American pressure, if there is any, comes from the words Meloni said during the election campaign: He promised that if he were Prime Minister he would leave the agreement and the American president, and many have also called for months of follow-up and accountability for these statements.”

How are relations with China changing now?

“I do not believe those who say that not renewing this agreement is actually a big rock in our relations with China. I also believe that China is a smart enough country to understand that Italy cannot be used as a propaganda tool. So I hope that Giorgia Meloni’s decision will not only affect Italy’s interests in Beijing.” It may help us to be evaluated more respectfully, rather than as a tool in a bigger game that we are playing. In this sense, the decision Conte made at that time turned us into pawns. We should act accordingly by sending clear messages to Beijing, without being manipulated here and there at the pleasure of the Chinese government. .”

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Source: Today IT