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Note by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs – Meeting of Minister Di Maio with Chinese Foreign Affairs Minister, Wang Yi

Today, on the eve of the G20 Summit, Minister Di Maio met the Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs and Head of the Chinese delegation, Wang Yi. They discussed the progress of bilateral relations and addressed several multilateral and regional issues.  

While noting the positive trend in bilateral trade and Italian exports to China, which had grown by 35% in the first eight months, Minister Di Maio stressed the importance of restoring direct flights between the two countries – of great significance for further supporting economic recovery – and restarting the normal mobility of economic operators, students and researchers. The Ministers agreed on the importance of further promoting industrial cooperation in the energy-environment transition sector. Large groups and specialised Italian companies have cutting-edge expertise to achieve the ambitious climate neutrality goals that Italy and China have set for the coming years.

Minister Di Maio also made Minister Wang Yi aware of the problematic situation that families faced by waiting to complete the procedures for adopting Chinese children, hoping that quick solutions could be found.

Turning to international issues, the Ministers deepened their discussion on developments in Afghanistan. Minister Di Maio highlighted the importance of international coordination in defending human rights, humanitarian assistance and the fight against terrorism. They discussed the environmental objectives pursued by the Italian co-Presidency of COP26 and the Chinese Presidency of COP15 on Biodiversity in Kunming.

Finally, regarding EU-China relations, Minister Di Maio reaffirmed Italy’s support for the resumption of high-level dialogue between Brussels and Beijing and hoped it would include a Chinese return to the Dialogue on Human Rights. In particular, Minister Di Maio underlined Italian concerns about the situation in Xinjiang and Hong Kong. Concerning Taiwan, the Minister expressed concern about the tensions in the Strait, hoping that dialogue and detente would prevail.

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