With Italy's elections, held 21 April, 1996, the new prime minister, Romano Prodi and his Olive Tree Alliance as a new government, do not intend on disturbing the status quo by pressing any new issues or taking an independent stand on the existing issues on the table. Presently, Italy is struggling with domestic concerns, such as divided political parties and budget reform. With this government being the 52nd government since the Second World War, Italian politics are difficult to follow.
Italy considers trade-related growth as essential for job creation. Italy's unemployment rate in 1995 was 12%, and is forecasted to be slightly lower for 1996, at 11.5%. With respect to international trade, Italy is also chairing the European Union and thus, Italy is pleased with what issues the EU will be addressing.
One such issue that the European Union has been noted to address at the G7, is the question of Cuba. The United States sanction rules against Cuba will be raised by the EU president Jacques Santer.
Italy is supportive of the Halifax agenda. This is not uncommon, as well, given that Lamberto Dini, the former Prime Minister from the Halifax summit, is now the Italian Foreign Minister.
Italy's aid as % of their GNP is 0.3%. Italy has stated that rather than focussing on the monetary aspect of foreign aid, the importance lies with the effective targetting of assistance.
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Italy is noticeably pressing for United Nations Security Council reform. Italy has issued a document to this effect, titled the "Italian Proposal for Reform of the Security Council of the United Nations." The document describes the Security Council structure as being elitist and there is much debate over enlargement of the Security Council. It states that democracy in the Council must be strengthened by more rigorously applying the principle of equitable geographic distribution, and thus, making the Security Council "more credible, efficient, effective as a representative and democratic instrument."
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