By Gino Baldi, for Eurasia Business News – November 25, 2021

French President Emmanuel Macron is on an official visit on April 25 and 26 in Rome to sign with the head of the Italian government, Mario Draghi, the Quirinal Treaty, named after the palace of the Presidency of the Italian Republic where the ceremony takes place. Launched at the Franco-Italian summit in Lyon in 2017, this agreement aims to strengthen cooperation between the two Latin countries.

This treaty is considered by the Italian institutions as the symbol of a consolidation of the Paris-Rome axis and as a means to rebalance the forces in Europe. The text is not yet revealed in its details. But we know that it covers many areas. From economy to culture, including defense, security and foreign policy. It should be remembered that the bilateral agreement, put on track by Emmanuel Macron and the former President of the Council, Paolo Gentiloni, had been frozen in 2018.

Thanks to the pressure of the Italian president, Sergio Mattarella, to Mario Draghi and to the French ambassador in Rome, Christian Masset, who forged links at all levels, the “anti-French party”, still very present at the Farnesina, will eventually give way. Allowing Italy, which has been wary of bilateral treaties since 1945, to embark on a new path. It is rumored that other treaties could follow, with Spain and the United Kingdom.

Since Italian Prime minister Mario Draghi took office in February 2021, he had four bilateral talks with the French president, often alone, in English, on the sidelines of European summits or the G7, in addition to an official dinner in Marseille in early September. Politically, they share a pragmatic liberal centrism and support the strenghtening of the European Union.

France and Italy are, for each other, a major trading partner. With an overall trade volume of € 82 billion (2019), France is the second customer and the second supplier of Italy while Italy is the third customer and the third supplier of France. 

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