The prime minister concludes a major gas deal with Algeria and Libya

Meloni’s government strengthened Italy’s relationship with Algeria, taking advantage of Spain’s near absence. For the fourth time in less than a year, the two countries held meetings at the highest level: two visits by Mario Draghi to Algeria (April and July), a trip by Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune to Rome in May, and another official visit by Giorgia Meloni to the North African country for two days (22 and January 23).

At the heart of the new alliance with Algeria, the Meloni government intends to play a leading role in the Mediterranean and, moreover, act as a bridge for Algerian gas to completely replace the Russian gas in Italy and reach all of Europe: “It is about a project with a legislative horizon (five years), with the possibility, at a difficult time for Europe in terms of supply, to make Italy the gateway, and the main ‘hub’ for energy distribution in Europe »Melloni said.

That is why Italy has its strategic location, as explained by Claudio Descalzi, CEO of the Italian multinational energy company ENI, who accompanied Meloni on his visit to Algeria: “Italy has unique geographical, logistical and infrastructure characteristics. We have a gas pipeline linked to Algeria, with a capacity of 36,000 million cubic meters, which is still underutilized; A gas pipeline that connects to Libya, with a capacity of 12 or 13,000 million cubic meters and can increase up to several billion, then we have LNG from Egypt and all the other African countries that we work with.

There is also a tap (a pipeline across the Adriatic Sea) that carries natural gas from Azerbaijani deposits to Italy, after traveling nearly 900 kilometers through Greece, Albania and the Adriatic Sea.

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beyond energy

The signing of bilateral agreements extends to many sectors. In fact, the delegation that accompanied Meloni also included the President of Confindustria, Carlo BonomiTo help increase the presence of Italian companies in Algeria. Of note is the exchange between Algerian energy supplies and Italian military materials, in which the best Italian state companies, such as the Leonardo Group, are very important in the aerospace, defense and security sectors. “Rome needs Algerian gas in order to completely distance itself from Russian blackmail and reassert its influence in the Mediterranean. Algeria, on the other hand, needs Italy’s support to become an industrial power and, above all, a military power, a regional power, as the weekly “L’Espresso” writes.

Evaluating her first hundred days at the helm of the government, Giorgia Meloni stressed that Italy wants to have a “presence in North Africa in order to prevent the departure of migrants”. Meloni changed his initial policy on immigration to avoid conflict with Brussels and other European countries.

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