Today the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Luigi Di Maio, met with the Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, at the Foreign Ministry.
During the cordial meeting, the two Ministers examined the state of bilateral cooperation and reaffirmed their intention to further deepen relations in every area of common interest. Mr Di Maio stressed that, for Italy, Saudi Arabia is the first trading partner in the Gulf and the second in the MENA area and affirmed that there is interest on the Italian side in strengthening the economic partnership and that the Saudi Government's Vision 2030 agenda offers various opportunities of strategic importance for Italian companies, especially in the infrastructure, energy, manufacturing and logistics sectors.
The Minister then expressed his appreciation for the work carried out during the year by the Saudi Presidency of the G20 – which will pass to Italy in 2021 – in particularly difficult circumstances, given the global epidemic. In particular, Mr Di Maio pointed out how Italy will continue the work programme launched by the Saudi Presidency, aimed at encouraging global trade, damaged by the pandemic, international cooperation in the search for a vaccine, environmental and energy issues.
The main regional issues are also on the agenda, first and foremost the latest developments in Libya. Reiterating the urgency of achieving a real and sustainable ceasefire and resuming oil production in Libya, Minister Di Maio called for all parties involved in the conflict to work hard to avoid a new escalation on a scale with unpredictable consequences. The Ministers also discussed developments in Yemen and Iraq.