Throughout 2016, the Italian Government was called upon on several occasions to express its position on the negotiation and approval of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement between Canada and the EU (CETA). In May 2016, the Government – in contrast with the wide majority of the other EU Member States – announced its willingness to consider CETA as a “EU only agreement”, falling within the sole competence of the EU as part of its commercial policy. On the contrary, in July 2016 the EU Commission decided to qualify CETA as a “mixed agreement”, subject to the approval of each of the national parliaments of the EU Member States. The Government’s view on the matter was expressed in particular on the following occasions:
On 13 January 2016 the French authorities arrested the Italian fishing vessel Mina with the accusation of violating French territorial waters. The Mina was arrested during fishery of the red shrimp off the Ligurian coast, between Ventimiglia and the Mentone bay, before the Balzi Rossi reef, and was released upon payment of an 8300-euro deposit. Subsequently, the French authorities expressed regret for the arrest, conceding that it ensued from a wrongful determination of the boundary and jurisdiction over the area. The case spotlighted the on-going discussion between Italy and France over the determination of their maritime boundaries and corresponding fishing rights in an area off Liguria and North of Sardinia, pending the ratification of the so-called Caen Agreement. To date, Italy’s and France’s jurisdiction and fishing rights in the respective areas have been regulated de facto by the 1986 Bocche di Bonifacio Agreement and the 1892 Convention on the fishing zone in the Mentone Bay. More specifically, the 1892 Mentone Bay Convention has never entered into force and was negotiated as a modus vivendi providing for a cooperative ground between the countries, whilst leaving their positions legally unprejudiced. As to the Bocche di Bonifacio Agreement, it only determines French and Italian territorial waters in the Strait of Bonifacio. Though regulating the fisheries traditions and practices of French and Italian fishing vessels in a common zone West of the Strait, the Agreement fails to comprehensively establish the Parties’ maritime boundaries and fishing rights. The Caen Agreement, when in force, would thus constitute the first bilateral instrument to effectively determine the maritime boundaries between the two countries and serve as a basis to settle possible disputes.
CHAMBER OF DEPUTIES, XVII LEGISLATURE, 485th MEETING, 18 SEPTEMBER 2015
On 18 September 2015, the Government was asked to express its position on the controversial investor-State dispute settlement clauses (ISDS clauses) contained in relevant commercial treaties the European Union has negotiated, or is negotiating, with some of its trade partners (in particular, the EU-Canada Comprehensive Trade Agreement, CETA, and the EU-US Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, TTIP). On behalf of the Government, the Deputy Minister of Economic Development, Mr Carlo Calenda, replied that
SENATE OF THE REPUBLIC, XVII LEGISLATURE, 336th MEETING, 22 OCTOBER 2014.
On 22 October 2014, the President of the Council of Ministers, Mr. Matteo Renzi, outlined before the Senate the position of Italy on the topics to be discussed at the European Council of 23-24 October 2014, i.e. the new climate and energy policy framework, the economic situation in the EU and other external relation issues in the light of the developments on the international scene.
NEW YORK, 69th SESSION OF THE UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY, THIRD COMMITTEE, FIRST MEETING ON ITEM 26 (SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT), 7 OCTOBER 2014.
On 7 October 2014, during the debate in the Third Committee of the UN General Assembly, Italy’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Lambertini, expressed the position of Italy on social development. After declaring that Italy aligned itself with the statement made by the European Union, Mr Lambertini addressed the issues of persons with disabilities, youth empowerment, rights of the elderly, gender equality, and role of families, including non-traditional couples, in the development process. He said:
UN MEETING “MOVING AWAY FROM THE DEATH PENALTY: NATIONAL LEADERSHIP”, NEW YORK, 25 SEPTEMBER 2014.
On 25 September 2014, at a High-level event of the 69th Session of the UN General Assembly organized by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights together with Italy and other three States, the Italian Prime Minister, Mr Matteo Renzi, delivered a speech on the death penalty and on the need to support a moratorium to stop it and eventually to abolish it. After mentioning Italy’s leading role in the abolitionist campaign (with the Grand Duke of Tuscany, Leopold II, having renounced to capital punishment already in 1786), he said that Italians
NEW YORK, 22 SEPTEMBER 2014
On 22 September 2014, on the sidelines of the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, Italy co-organised the event “Ending child marriage: towards a more gender equitable world”. The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Federica Mogherini, gave a speech in which she highlighted the importance of the direct involvement and ownership of countries affected, in particular in matters of education, in order to progressively eradicate this practice. She said:
SANTIAGO (CHILE), ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMISSION FOR LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN, 5 AUGUST 2014.
On 5 August 2014, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Federica Mogherini, gave a keynote speech at the headquarters of the Economic and Social Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). In her intervention, the Minister focused on Europe’s past and future ties to Latin America, and underlined the capital importance of regionalism as a means to pursue peace and prosperity.
EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, VIII LEGISLATURE, FIRST PLENARY SESSION, 2 JULY 2014.
On 2 July 2014, the President of the Council of Ministers, Mr. Matteo Renzi, gave a speech before the European Parliament as Italy took over its six-month Presidency of the European Union.
In his speech, Mr. Renzi put particular emphasis on the need to boost economic growth. He said:
ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL, 2014 SESSION OF THE HUMANITARIAN AFFAIRS SEGMENT, 25 JUNE 2014.
On 25 June 2014, at the general debate of the Humanitarian Affairs Segment of the United Nations Economic and Social Council, Italy delivered a national statement. After aligning itself with the one made by Greece on behalf of the European Union, Italy expressed its wish to add some remarks: