The Italian government has sent a letter to the Chinese embassy in Rome in the last few days, which became known only when the daily Corriere della Sera reported it today. In the letter, Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani announced that the 2019 BRI Memorandum will not be extended. Confirming the report, Tajani explained in a forum organized by Adnkronos: “The Silk Road is not our priority. We have seen that the Silk Road has not produced the desired results; to the contrary, those who are not in the Silk Road had better results.” (This has been exposed as a misrepresentation of reality, but Tajani does not care).
In the attempt to save the day, Tajani added: “Non-participation in the Silk Road does not mean that this is a negative action towards China: it means being able to have very good relationships and work intensively on trade aspects to strengthen our presence in [their] market. We have already put a date for the Italy-China intergovernmental meeting in Verona next year, to deal with all issues of international trade. Relationships with China, which is our competitor on a global level, keep being very good.”