Italy-India, Meloni guest at the Raisina Dialogue: defense cooperation is strengthened

The signing of a memorandum of understanding is imminent

Italy and India are putting “a decade of tensions after the arrest of the two marines” behind them with the forthcoming signing of a memorandum of understanding on defence, which should be announced on the occasion of the Giorgia Meloni’s visit to New Delhi. This was underlined by the Indian press, which places great emphasis on the presence of the prime minister as guest of honour, on 2 March, at the Raisina Dialogue, a conference on geopolitics and geoeconomics which has brought together experts and politicians from all over the world in the Indian capital every year since 2016.

Meloni will have a bilateral meeting with Indian premier Narendra Modi, whom he had already seen on the sidelines of the G20 in Bali and November and who he will see again in September, when he returns to New Delhi for the summit of the group that brings together the 20 most industrialized powers in the world under Indian presidency.

The memorandum expected to be announced next week is the first of its kind between Italy and India and is related to Italy’s strategy in the Indo-Pacific. On a visit to Bangalore in recent days, Defense Undersecretary Matteo Perego of Cremnago spoke about it in a meeting with Defense Minister Rajnath Singh.

“In recent years we have witnessed continuous efforts made by both sides to put the ghosts of Agusta Westland and Leonardo behind them – commented the former Indian ambassador in Rome, Anil Wadhwa, in a reference to the cancellation of the contracts following to the marò case – and to concentrate on the efforts of ‘make in India’, for which Italian companies are willing partners”.

Then, speaking of Meloni’s presence at the Raisina Dialogue, the former ambassador comments that “the decidedly different positions within the government on the conflict between Ukraine and Russia will make the premier’s visit to India interesting, with her message that will be listened to with great interest”.