The MED This Week newsletter provides expert analysis and informed insights on the MENA region's most significant issues and trends, bringing together unique opinions on the topic and reliable foresight on possible future scenarios. Today, we place the spotlight upon the recent visit of the Italian President of the Council of Ministers Giorgia Meloni to Algeria, focusing on Italy’s renewed activism within the wider Mediterranean region.
Almost a year after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, an increasing number of Italians fear the economic crisis caused by the war and the energy crisis. The growing uncertainty surrounding the end of the conflict overshadowed other issues, like the fear of the pandemic. And yet, below the radar other things are happening. Take the gradual but persistent estrangement between China and the West.
As one of the countries with the oldest population in the world, Italy offers a good example of how the challenges of an ageing population can be addressed and to look at this phenomenon also as an asset for the society, through the promotion of active ageing, while at the same time acknowledging that care provision needs adequate investments to achieve the high quality that frailty in later life deserves.
Cybert hreats – like ransomware or other types of malwares – are evolving, pervasive, and ubiquitous. They endanger both individuals and organizations across several communities worldwide. They run through addresses networks, information systems, and services, which represent the backbone of contemporary digital societies and the premises for their industrial, economic, and social development.
Italy is at the heart of the “wider Mediterranean” region, which comprises all countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea as well as Gulf partners. Italy is also multilateralist at heart, a mindset that comes from our history and geographical location, which we mainstream in every field of our work. Inclusiveness is a general principle that we embrace, and it holds especially true in domains where interconnections and interdependencies are defining features, as in the cyberspace.
After the Cold War, Italy started to act as an international peacekeeper, deploying troops in dozens of military operations, mainly within multilateral frameworks. Recently, with the end of the “war on terror” and after the 2015 White Paper, Italy devoted growing interest and resources to the “Enlarged Mediterranean”. Despite Italy’s post-bipolar military dynamism, limited attention has been paid to assessing missions.
France has never seen such a flat election campaign with quite a predictable outcome, despite the dramatic scenarios of recent times (the violent Yellow Vest protests and the pandemic) and the current tragic backdrop of the war in Ukraine. Barring any last-minute surprises, Emmanuel Macron will remain at the Elysée almost without a fight. All he has to do is make the most of the divisions in the opposition ranks, on both the right and the left, and of the weakness of his challengers.
Franco-German relations have always been at the core of Paris’ European policy. With the 2019 Aachen Treaty, Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel built on the 1963 Elysée Treaty and further strengthened their relations. Since the Covid-19 crisis, however, Paris has found itself more aligned with Rome than Berlin in many respects, as shown by a number of economic indicators. France’s average growth rate before the pandemic (2015-2019) was around 1.6%, just a bit lower than Germany’s (1.7%) and higher than Italy’s (1%).
The G20 Summit is at the starting line with G20 Leaders gathering in Rome on 30-31 October. The agenda of the Summit is loaded with pressing global challenges: vaccinations and access to healthcare, economic recovery and inequalities, climate change and green transition, trade, finance and digitalisation. But the G20 is a year-long multilateral effort. What has already been achieved during the Italian Presidency?
Recent investigations have uncovered an Italian group of anti-Semitic far-right extremists with an interest in Nazi occultism. According to investigators, they allegedly were involved in anti-vaccine campaigns, showed their willingness in planning acts of violence, and had contacts with Ukrainian ultranationalist forces.
Iraq's geostrategic importance for the European Union is mirrored by the growing interests of single European states. This is particularly true for France and Italy, who are indeed at the forefront of the European strategic relationship with Baghdad.