The Minister of foreign Affairs of Italy announced the arrival of the country’s leadership in Moscow

Spring in the Russian capital on an official visit will arrive the President of Italy Sergio Mattarella and Prime Minister, Paolo Gentiloni, said on Monday, March 27, Minister of foreign Affairs of the Republic Angelino Alfano, who was in Moscow on a working visit.

On Monday the Italian diplomat held talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov and Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich.

According to Alfano, the visit of the President of Italy will take place “literally in the next few weeks” behind him will come Gentiloni. In addition, we discuss the possibility of arrival of any of the Republic’s leadership at the St. Petersburg economic forum (SPIEF) in early summer, he said.

“To coordinate schedules is quite difficult: 2 June we have a national holiday (day of proclamation of the Republic in 1946. —), – said Alfano. – But the forum will be held from 1 to 3 June, I’m sure we will think of something. Moreover, many Italian businessmen have already confirmed their participation”. Last year at SPIEF visited the then head of the Italian government Matteo Renzi, who was one of the most high-ranking guests of the forum.

Following the visit of Renzi Russia and Italy signed a number of significant investment agreements that reminded Arkady Dvorkovich. “Now these agreements are in the process of implementation. For example, we discussed with the Minister Alfano the issues of cooperation in energy, engineering, medicine and other industries,” – said Deputy Prime Minister. Last summer, after a visit to Russia, Renzi claimed that the total amount of prisoners in the forum of the agreements exceeds €1 billion.

Regarding the energy sector, Dvorkovich said that Moscow strongly supports the participation of Italian companies in the construction of new pipelines, first and foremost, “Nord stream-2” and “Turkish stream.” According to the official, from a political point of view, Russia refers to the participation of the Italians “most sympathetic”, however the final decision will be taken on the basis of a tender held by Gazprom. The assurance, Prime Minister, Russia is Italy’s “key partner” in several sectors, and one of them is energy.

Dvorkovich and the Prime Minister are co-chairmen of the bilateral intergovernmental Commission. In their speeches, both officials have repeatedly stressed the close cultural, economic and business ties between the two countries.

However, in monetary terms the relations between the two countries is not so rosy. This drew the attention of the Russian colleague, Prime Minister Sergei Lavrov, who on Monday also met with the Italian Minister. According to Lavrov, Russian-Italian trade in three years, decreased 2.5 times. According to the FCS of Russia, in 2016, the trade turnover between the countries amounted to only $19.8 billion a Year earlier it reached $30.6 bn, and in 2013 — almost $53.9 billion

For his part, Lavrov announced the arrival in Russia of the head of the Italian Senate Pietro Grasso. Russian Minister confident of political cooperation between Moscow and Rome is necessary not only for the development of trade relations, but also to combat the “unprecedented upsurge of international terrorism”. Russia and Italy, he said, interested in the peaceful resolution of current international conflicts: it was about the events in Syria, Ukraine and Libya.

Alfano in his speeches in Moscow has repeatedly said that his country is ready for dialogue with Moscow. Sanctions on Ukraine are, according to him, merely a tool of implementation of the Minsk agreements, but not “a goal in the opponent”. On Syria, the Minister said that the fate of President Bashar al-Assad should be decided in the elections, that is, by the Syrians themselves, which coincides with the Russian position. “Even in times of confrontation between the Italians had the courage and wisdom to maintain ties with Russia, – said the visitor. Now we need to work together to fight terrorism. In this issue Russia is our strategic partner”.