Deepening UK-Italy strategic cooperation

The objective of this high-level workshop is to discuss the current state of UK-Italy strategic cooperation and establish ways forward, especially in the field of defence.

Research event, Workshop Invitation only
2 December 2021 — 3:30PM TO 5:30PM
Chatham House 10 St James’s Square London SW1Y 4LE United Kingdom

This  workshop examines the current state of play for UK-Italy strategic cooperation – particularly in the field of defence – in the context of the new guidelines for ‘Global Britain’ and domestic changes in Italy, difficulties in the EU-UK relationship, a rich agenda for bilateral cooperation after the G7, G20 and COP26 presidencies and ahead of a new joint declaration.

This event is organised with the additional support of Leonardo, and in collaboration with the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) and the Embassy of Italy in the United Kingdom.

The first session will look at the state of the bilateral relationship and internal dynamics in Italy and the UK. The following questions will be discussed:

  • What are the priorities of the Draghi government? 
  • What is the state of the union in the UK and what to expect over the coming years?

In the second session, participants will discuss Italy-UK strategic cooperation in the field of defence:

  • What is the state of UK-EU relations, especially regarding foreign, security and defence cooperation and how do they affect relations between Rome and London? 
  • What expectations and priorities for NATO’s new Strategic Concept? 
  • What role for NATO but also ad hoc and minilateral formats such as E4? 
  • What future for UK-Italy joint capability projects such as Tempest? 

A working dinner at the Italian embassy will enable longer in-person dialogue as part of a third session about UK-Italy cooperation and the future of the bilateral agenda.


Ambassador Raffaele Trombetta, Ambassador of Italy to the United Kingdom

Ambassador Jill Morris, Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Italy

Vincenzo Celeste, Director, Europe, Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Sarah Taylor, Director, Europe, FCDO

Hans Kundnani, Director, Europe Programme, Chatham House

Alessandro Marrone, Head, Defence Programme, Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI)

Peter Watkins, Associate Fellow, International Security Programme, Chatham House

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