Telephone Call Between Minister Guerini and UK Defence Secretary Wallace
(Source: Italian Ministry of Defence; issued Dec 02, 2020)
ROME --- Industrial cooperation and the Tempest programme, Enlarged Mediterranean, Libya and bilateral cooperation were the focus of today’s telephone call between Minister Lorenzo Guerini and UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace

“Cooperation with the UK is of fundamental importance, given the deep bonds between our nations and the host of shared strategic interests. I believe that strengthening the relationship between our two countries, even after Brexit, is a common objective,” Defence Minister Lorenzo Guerini stated during his telephone call with UK Secretary for Defence Ben Wallace.

Guerini and Wallace reiterated their common will to further strengthen bilateral cooperation.

The call, following the one that took place on 27 April, allowed discussing the international situation, pandemic effects and growing global instability. Discussion also focused on industrial cooperation through the Tempest programme, the Enlarged Mediterranean, Libya and bilateral cooperation.

“Cooperation between Italy and the UK produced important results”, Minister Guerini said, underscoring the strategic relevance of the existing partnerships between the respective industrial sectors.

In that regard, Italy considers the UK as strategic for the future of the respective Defence and aerospace industries, the development of the Tempest programme and other cooperation programmes in the avionics sector.

“Tempest is an initiative of great strategic value, that may prove decisive in redefining the future balance of military and industrial capabilities in the aerospace sector at the European and global level”, the Minister said, going on to explain that “...cooperation between our countries must be able to rely on an industrial cooperation model that guarantees a balanced sharing of technology and know-how, as a virtuous innovation of experience gained within the framework of other common programmes”.

As regards the Enlarged Mediterranean, Guerini and Wallace agreed on their firm will to work in compliance with international law, maintaining the focus on mitigating tension while fostering discussion with Ankara to find productive solutions.

“Italy is working tirelessly to foster a productive dialogue“, Guerini told his counterpart, also considering the strong cooperation between Italy and the UK in that regard.

Libya is also the subject of a shared vision, which still sees Italy’s concrete engagement for a peaceful, stable and secure country.

“We committed ourselves to support the reorganization of the Libyan Armed Forces, ensuring our support in the sector of training and education”, Lorenzo Guerini explained, announcing a planned meeting with his Libyan counterpart to better define the details of a structured cooperation capability development programme, including training of personnel.

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