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Italy officially abandons China’s New Silk Road

Italy officially abandons China's New Silk Road

The Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni On September 10th, he dropped the bombshell at the G-20 summit in New Delhi: four years later, his country would abandon the so-called Chinese Silk Road (Belt and Road Initiative or BRI), Xi Jinping’s pharaonic, multi-million dollar project designed to strengthen Beijing’s global influence, which once seduced Giuseppe Conte and irritated more than one person in Washington.

One of the campaign promises made by the leader of the far-right Brothers of Italy before his seat in the Chigi Palace was precisely to abandon the agreement with China. According to him Corriere della Sera, the coalition board led by Meloni handed over the relevant documents to Beijing to formalize its withdrawal from the project. It took three weeks of negotiations to maintain bilateral relations and allow the withdrawal agreed by the parties without publication.

According to the Milanese newspaper, the Italian government initially planned to change the terms of the agreement rather than terminate it outright, but China ruled out that option.

Italy was previously the only G7 member country to take part in China’s Silk Road. The amicable exit took place quietly. Neither party is interested in making the separation public. While Beijing manages a project that has fallen into partial crisis for financial reasons, Italy’s departure is a setback that could also reverberate in other countries.

For its part, Rome is interested in maintaining good relations with the world’s second largest economy, with which it already has plenty of room for recovery in terms of trade balance. However, it remains to be seen whether this will be the case or whether there will be no trade retaliation from Xi Jinping’s China.

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