“Italy and Canada share priorities, positions and interests on a wide range of global and regional issues, and collaborate effectively in a number of international fora, including the United Nations, G7, G20 and NATO. ” Andrea Ferrari, Ambassador of Italy to Ottawa, a Formiche.net Appointment for Italian Diplomatic Coordination, in view of the XIV Conference of Ambassadors.
“The existence of a vast and vibrant community of Italian-Canadians actively involved in the cultural, social, economic and political spheres contributes to the excellent bilateral relations between the two countries,” he continues. There are extensive exchanges on both sides of the Atlantic between entrepreneurs, students and researchers, creating innovative business opportunities and partnerships. “Italy and Canada have complementary economies and often very similar economic structures, made up of a few large groups and numerous small and medium enterprises, with a rich technological and scientific culture,” he adds.
The Italian Embassy in Ottawa recently hosted a Business Forum on Artificial Intelligence. How are the two countries negotiating on this issue?
The Forum on Artificial Intelligence was organized by the Embassy in association with the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Canada in Montreal, an association of entrepreneurs and professionals that promotes the internationalization of companies and the spread of Made in Italy in North America. The forum is a forum for anyone interested in the field (start-ups, companies and scholars) to share information, knowledge, discuss opportunities for cooperation between the two countries and weave trade chains. Both Italy (and Europe) and Canada focus on growth priorities and sustainability for industrial policies and the transition to a regional economy. The European Green Agreement and National Recovery Plans, defined for the post-epidemic period, pursue ambitious environmental objectives that require acceleration in the adoption of green change and circular economic models in many sectors of society and the economy. The Green economy Economic recovery is a key axis of the strategy, and significant funds have been allocated at the federal and provincial levels to transition to a greener and more sustainable economy. There are many complementary fields between Italy and Canada: artificial intelligence for biosciences, biotechnology, motion, energy, agriculture, aerospace, and facilitates the achievement of sustainable development goals.
What role can Italy and Canada play in the challenge of artificial intelligence?
Hundreds of Italian professors and researchers work successfully in Canada, contributing to the success of Canadian research in various fields and actively collaborating with Italian universities and research centers. Canada is a world leader in a scientific perspective and creates an ecosystem dedicated to artificial intelligence with large research centers. The Canadian federal government has developed the so-called network in recent years Super cluster Group research and technology centers located in different parts of the country in the federation focus on a specific theme of research applied to industry, oceanography, artificial intelligence, advanced production, industry: proteins and digital technology. The Canadian government has already allocated millions of Canadian dollars for the project and is expanding research and innovation with the aim of developing high-level talent. The Super cluster Artificial intelligence, according to forecasts, could have a significant impact on Canada’s GDP and create thousands of jobs.
And how does Italy fit in?
This reality in Canada is of extraordinary interest to Italy, with the skills already developed in the sector and investments at the national and local levels, following the Italian national recovery and recession plan. We can cite by example: the Technopol of Bologna; In Milan, the European Laboratory for Synergy, ELLIS, Learning and Intelligence Organizations between Poconi, Milan State University, Milan-Picoka University, Polytechnic of Milan; And the Italian Institute for Artificial Intelligence will be in Turin. It is therefore natural, yet fundamental, and the Italian-Canadian axis of artificial intelligence is well incorporated into the research and innovation strategy between Canada and the EU.
Could Canada also be an ally in emerging technologies, such as human rights, which have always been at the heart of Italian diplomacy?
Protecting and promoting human rights has always been one of the key principles of Italian and Canadian politics. The established relations and multilateral cooperation between Italy and Canada on the issue of human rights at the multilateral and bilateral level also naturalize the expansion of this cooperation in the field of emerging technologies. Canada was the closest ally to the Italian positions during our country’s G20 presidency. These general ideas include some shared policies on the transition to a greener, more prosperous and inclusive economy in the final announcement of the G20 leaders. On equal opportunities Empowerment பெண்; Inclusive, impartial, adaptable and flexible education systems in favor of a more egalitarian society; Inclusive digital transformation, the basis for an even distribution of productivity drive and its benefits; The digital economy, higher education and research will be impartial and open; The development of artificial intelligence should be responsible, person-centered and inclusive, taking into account the needs of small and medium enterprises. Canada is aware of concerns about the use of new technologies, especially issues related to privacy and ethics. In Quebec, there are a large number of research centers on artificial intelligence, and a provincial commission on ethics in science and technology has been established to address these issues in relation to new technologies.
What are the implications of the Govt-19 epidemic on economic and trade relations between the two countries?
By 2020, despite the difficulties created by the epidemic, our country is the country that has shown the highest decline in its exports after China and Korea. Excellent performance of the agro-food sector contributed to curb the negative effects of the crisis, with exports of almost 15% and especially exports of meat and hams (+ 48%), pasta and starchy products (+ 21.5%), coffee (+ 15.3%) and cheeses (+ 6.4%). ). Despite many inconveniences caused by the continuity of supply chains, trade with Canada in 2020 was approximately ப 6 billion (-3.4% compared to 2019), with exports equivalent to 3 4.3 billion. Euro (-4.9% compared to the previous year) and 1.8 billion imports (+ 0.6%). The trade balance was positive at 2.5 billion euros. Also in 2021 Italian exports to Italy grew faster than the average of Canada’s supplier countries. In the first seven months of 2021, trade increased by + 7.1% to 3.6 billion euros compared to the same period of the previous year, with exports 2.6 billion (+ 12.1%) and imports 1 billion (-4.3%). Trade balance was positive at 1.6 billion. In the first eight months of 2021, Italy was Canada’s sixth supplier and seventeenth customer. Canada is the 23rd target market for our exports. Our market share is higher than 1.7% in the UK (1.4%), France (1.1%), and Spain (0.6%), but lower than in Germany (3.2%). The main products of our exports are: beverages, food and tobacco; Machines; Textile and tanning products; Rubber and plastic products; Transport equipment. The main products of our imports are agricultural and fish products; Transport equipment; Mineral products; Computers and electronic and optical instruments; Chemical-pharmaceutical products; Refined petroleum products. This data demonstrates the strength and regression of our production system and Made in Italy’s loyalty to this market. So our exports to Canada can resume from integrated bases, and I renew the commitment of the entire Embassy in Canada and the Italian organization to support our economic operators and Italian companies interested in investing in this country.
Do Canadian companies also express the fears shared by companies from other countries (e.g. justice and infrastructure) regarding the Italian system when looking at investment opportunities in our country?
Italy and Canada share a close economic relationship. Canadian companies and investment funds see Italy as a market with great opportunities. According to the latest data on direct investment, flows due to the epidemic have slowed in 2020, with Italian foreign direct investment in Canada (84 259 million compared to 84 849 million in 2019), and Canadian investment in Italy (€ 1 million in 2019 compared to € 30 million in 2019). By 2020, shares of Italian investment in Canada were worth 4 4 billion, particularly in the wholesale, mechanical, logistics and transport sectors, as well as in the agricultural food, construction and defense sectors. Canadian foreign direct investment in Italy in 2020 will be 950 million euros. There are many successful Canadian investments in Italy in various fields ranging from high technology to transportation, the cosmetics industry, biopharmaceuticals and energy.