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19 June 2019 The on-line newspaper devoted to the world of transports 18:48 GMT+2

March 11, 2019

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Confcommercio and Conftrasporto exhort the Italian government to the maximum precaution on the agreement with China for the Way of the Silk

The loss of the full national sovereignty is risked - they have emphasized Sangalli and Palenzona - on harbour and railway strategic infrastructures

Confcommercio and Conftrasporto, in a letter sent to the government to signature of the presidents Carlo Sangalli and Fabrizio Palenzona, have invited the Italian executive to the maximum precaution on the agreement between Italy and China on the Way of the Silk announced for next 22 March, during the visit of Chinese president XI Jinping, and have proposed a customs understanding between the two Countries.

Announcing the shipment of the missive to the government, Confcommercio and Conftrasporto they have remembered that the Italian executive has communicated the next signature of the agreement picture with Beijing in spite of the worries of the United States and the EU and that the prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has evidenced that the understanding will approach China the western standards of transparency and has emphasized that with the "New Via of the Silk" the Chineses they are prepared to connect Asia, Europe and Africa constructing roads, ports, railroads, nets of telecommunications. According to Count, they have specified the two entrepreneurial Confederations, for Italy would be be a matter of "an increase opportunity".

From part its government of Beijing, announcing the participation of Italy to the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), has rimarcato that Italy, that is the eighth greater economy of the world, will become therefore also the greatest economy to participate to the BRI. The Chinese government has not lacked to evidence as China could become a more useful partner for the resumption of the Italian economy regarding the USA and to same the EU: the executive - resuming declarations of Liang Haiming, dean of the Hainan University Belt and Road Research Institute and president of China Silk Road iValley Research Institute - has remembered that Italy is under pressure because of the increase of the national debt and the slow down of the economic increase and - it has evidenced Haiming - the Chinese enterprises could be able to stimulate the Italian economy, what that - it has observed - the United States and other countries of the European Union are not successful to make.

Between the national enterprises cited by the Chinese government which possible investor in Italy are the Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industry Co. (ZPMC), one of the world leaders in the segment of the means production and crane for the harbour field. "In the picture of the BRI and a development of the bilateral relations - the general manager of the company has declared in such sense, Ye Hui - we will take in consideration an increase of our engagement in Italy, with this in mind to assume more staff on the spot once that the project will take start". "Moreover - it has added Ye - we are available to share our experience in the infrastructure construction and the production of equipments, that it would be of great aid for the developed European countries whose infrastructures are aging". ZPMC, in fact, is under responsibility of China Communications Construction Company (CCCC), group that take care mainly of the transport infrastructure construction, of activity of dredging and the production of machinery and group that could for example become partner of the Authority of Harbour System of the Ligurian Sea Western, as looked on to in recent days from the president of the Paolo Emilio Signorini agency, for giving course to great works in the port of Genoa.

The government of Beijing has remembered that from 2000 to the 2017 total investments of China in Italy they have reached 13,7 billion euros and Italy so has become the third main destination of the Chinese investments in the EU after the United Kingdom (42,2 billion euros) and Germany (20,6 billion euros).

In the letter sent to the prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and the minister of Infrastructures and the Transports, Danilo Toninelli, the presidents of Confcommercio and Conftrasporto cool instead the enthusiasms: "Italy - Sangalli and Palenzona have written - would be the only Country of particular importance to sign an understanding, considered that, always more, the European Union evidences the subtended hegemonic design to such project. In particular, the Italian harbour system, with the independent and not coordinated action of various Authorities of System, is candidated to being terminal of the Way of the Silk. It is spoken about investments to Trieste and Venice. Quite to Genoa the Authority of System has announced of wanting to constitute a mixed society with Chinese group CCCC for the planning and the construction of works, in exception to all the enforced norms".

"We remember - the letter continues - than the Chinese presence and Asian in the Italian ports it has of the precedence not always comforting. COSCO, the same state society that the port of the Pireo manages, had a participation important in the Conateco terminal of Naples, that it has abandoned to the first difficulties, creating a situation of serious crisis, only exceeded thanks to the subentro of another operator".

The representatives of Confcommercio and Conftrasporto have expressed moreover doubts on "the thrilling" data are diffused in support of the initiative: the increase of the traffics for Italy, in fact - second the two organizations - would be limited to modest a 2%. Confcommercio and Conftrasporto have manifested worry also because the Chinese industry is considered not free by risks of counterfeiting of the produced ones or conformity to international the productive standards.

"The first what on which Italy would have to work - has proposed instead Sangalli and Palenzona - it is a customs agreement with China for the control of the goods in departure, also through the use of the Rfid technology. We are already a lot worried for the understandings sign from important Italian enterprises with Chinese industries that risk to stuffed to lose know-how-how and competitiveness. If then we had to add the loss of the full national sovereignty on harbour and railway strategic infrastructures, we would risk to prejudice that economy of the sea that is fundamental for our Country".

"We at last remember - they have concluded the presidents of Confcommercio and Conftrasporto - bill 21 of 2012, that it imposes a real and dynamic control on the foreign investment, and the approved of European regulations in these days that subordinate these particular investments to an authorization. We invite therefore the Italian government, also in order not to elude the national and European norms of control, to estimate with great attention and precaution the agreement that agrees to agree".

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