On the fringes of the 14th Asia – Europe Foreign Ministers Meeting (ASEM), Undersecretary Ivan Scalfarotto had two bilateral meetings with the delegations of Australia and New Zealand.
With the Australian Deputy Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Tony Sheehan, the issue that was addressed was the negotiation between the EU and Australia for a possible free trade agreement. “Australia, with more than one million inhabitants of Italian descent, represents one of the Asia-Pacific Countries with which we share a large base of common values. In 2018, it was also the fourth-largest market for Italian products in the Asia-Pacific area after China, Japan and South Korea, with more than 4 billion euros worth of exports,” said the Undersecretary.
Bilateral cooperation and EU-New Zealand relations were the focus of the talks with the Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Fletcher Tabuteau. A particular convergence of views emerged on topics such as combating climate change and the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Undersecretary then focused on the two countries’ commercial cooperation and congratulated his counterpart on the growth in trade flows.