Rome, March 23 : Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Italian counterpart Sergio Mattarella agreed for Beijing-Rome comprehensive strategic partnership in the new era, upsetting and alarming United States and European Union leaders who fear that the Belt and Road Initiative is a Trojan horse by which Beijing can extend its strategic influence in Europe, Africa and Asia.
Italy becomes the first G-7 country to sign on to China’s Belt and road initiative.Italy signs 10 accords of China’s vast new Silk Road on Saturday.Implying that Chinvest billion of dollars in Italy’s infrastructure, energy, aviation and telecommunications sectors.
While European Union’s leaders were in Brussels strengthening strategy to counter the China’s economic incursion.
This year marks the 15th anniversary of the China-Italy comprehensive strategic partnership, and the two countries will celebrate the 50th anniversary of their diplomatic relations next year, Xi said.
He recalled that for nearly half a century, China and Italy have respected, trusted and helped each other, enhanced high-level exchanges and strategic mutual trust, facilitated communication, cooperation and convergence of interests, and deepened mutual understanding and traditional friendship.
As the world is undergoing profound changes unseen in a century, China is willing to carry forward the spirit of cooperation with the Italian side, strengthen strategic communication, encourage the international community to seek common ground while reserving differences and promote development through cooperation, so as to contribute new wisdom and strength to building a better world, Xi said.
Sergio Mattarella, Italy’s president, said the accord would be “the ideal framework for increasing joint collaboration”but apart from damaging its relations with US and EU, Italy’s debt will increase as there is substantial proof how it will reciprocate.
White House National Security Council spokesman Garrett Marquis warned against it: “We are skeptical that the Italian government’s endorsement will bring any sustained economic benefits to the Italian people, and it may end up harming Italy’s global reputation in the long run.”
President Xi Jinping of China was honoured with a red carpet welcome at Rome’s presidential palace with a Royal cavalry escort.Xi’s visit is the first visit by a Chinese head of state to Italy in 10 years.