Speech by Senator Francesco Giacobbe (PD) Italians Abroad - Conte 2 government inauguration

We quote the valuable intervention of Senator Francesco Giacobbe during the inauguration of the second Conte government, here is his speech in the Senate Chamber during the debate on the confidence in the government.

Senator Francesco Giacobbe:

Mr President of the Council,
Allow me to congratulate you on your new government. You have a very good team of ministers and I am sure that the hard work ahead of you, indeed ahead of us, in the coming months will help to change Italy.

In this speech, I intend to elaborate on some of the issues you mentioned in your policy statements regarding Italian communities around the world.

These are the many young people who leave and have left Italy in the past to settle in a foreign country. I was one of these.

Today, it is almost unimaginable to think of the past without modern technologies that allow us to connect with our nearest and dearest in real time, communicated by letter and the information when it arrived was already old.

Despite these difficulties, distance has not made one forget, indeed has increased the love for loved ones, for one's homeland. This great love has contributed and continues to contribute to the development of Italy and silently and unconditionally continues binding millions of Italians around the world to Italy.
Remittances from young emigrants, for example, provided Italy with valuable foreign currency when it was much needed to finance economic development.

Our compatriots abroad have been the pioneers for the purchase of products Made in Italy and have taught their new neighbours the goodness and quality of Italian products. In other words, Mr President, they have promoted major market penetration campaigns that would have cost Italian companies dearly in their absence.

And that's not all. Love and attachment to Italy have been passed on from the young people of yesterday to their children and grandchildren who today are perfectly integrated in their host societies and hold important roles in all sectors of society, even in decision-making centres. Believe me Mr President, I often tell myself that my children born in Australia are more Italian than me who was born in beautiful Catania.

In short, the communities of Italians around the world have been and continue to be a great resource for Italy.

How can we use this great resource?

We need to start with a strong investment in the promotion of language and culture in order to develop interest in our country, promote opportunities for collaboration between schools, universities, professional bodies, civil society organisations, and strengthen and establish relations based on mutual trust.

These are all key elements to increase trade relations including the export of Made in Italy products, tourist flows and the launch of partnership projects to promote new production activities and explore new markets.

To do this, we must change our attitude. Let us abandon the concept of protecting our compatriots abroad and tackle the issues that affect our communities by talking about citizenship rights and the enhancement of the communities themselves. The Italians in the World to continue to feel an important part of Italy.

Among citizenship rights, I am thinking of consular services, pensions, health care in Italy for Aire members, regaining citizenship for those who lost it before 1992, new social security mechanisms for workers who move from one country to another, more attention to the needs of the young people of yesterday who are now in advanced age.

Regarding valorisation, I am thinking, as already mentioned, of investments in language and culture to establish relations and relationships to promote Sistema Italia. I am thinking of the large network of people of Italian origin in the world, who now hold important roles in the decision-making centres of the countries where they live, to promote economic exchanges, identify new markets, promote new activities and investments in Italy and abroad.

It is in this perspective that we must address the issue of representation: parliamentarians, Comites and the General Council of Italians Abroad.

An institutional network made up of people, who in many cases voluntarily engage in activities to promote Italy around the world, which must be enhanced with the right recognition and support.

In conclusion, Mr President I hope that the Government do this important strategic investment choice on Italians in the worlda choice that cannot be left solely to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs but extended to other ministries including culture, education, economic development, labour and welfare.

I therefore call on you and the ministers Di Maio, Franceschini, Fioramonti, Patuanelli, Catalfo, the whole government, to invest resources in the realisation of programmes and objectives linked to this strategy.

I know that resources are hard to come by, but if we consider that this is an investment for Italy and not simply an expense, I think it will be possible to find them also by involving the many companies that have made and continue to make significant profits thanks to the communities of Italians around the world.

Believe me Mr. President, it is not only the communities of Italians around the world that will benefit, but also and above all Italy and the future of our children.

Full video of the Senator's speech in the Senate chamber on Facebook or you can see it in full below.

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