Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi (R) meets with Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano in Buenos Aires, Argentina, May 21, 2018, on the sidelines of the G20 foreign ministers' meeting. (Xinhua/Martin Zabala)
The joint efforts between China and Italy in building the Belt and Road Initiative during the 21st century will inject new impetus into the development of bilateral relations and open up new prospects, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Monday.
The remarks were made during Wang's meeting with his Italian counterpart Angelino Alfano on the side lines of the ministerial meeting of the Group of 20 (G20) in Buenos Aires.
Wang said that both China and Italy are ancient civilizations. In history, they were closely linked to each other through the ancient "Silk Road."
China appreciates Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni's visit to China last year to attend the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, which made positive contributions to the success of the forum, Wang said.
Wang expressed the hope that the two countries will seize the opportunity to actively carry out mutually beneficial cooperation under the Belt and Road framework and jointly develop the third-party market cooperation, exploring new potential and space for bilateral relations.
For his part, Alfano said that the development of Italy-China relations is robust and close high-level exchanges have been conducted between the two countries.
Italy and China have both historical and geographical advantages in carrying out the Belt and Road cooperation. Italy is willing to participate more actively in the cooperation at bilateral and EU levels based on their sound cooperation in the past, Alfano said.