Greco-Italian relations refer to bilateral foreign relations between Greece and Italy. Due to the strong historical friendship and the deep cultural ties between the two nations, Greece and Italy enjoy excellent diplomatic relations. More than two millennia of shared heritage and Greco-Italian relations strengthened the bonds between the two countries, which today are regarded as perfect and have led to the Italian language political statement "Una Faccia Una Razza" (One Face, One Race). Both countries are members of many international organizations, including the European Union, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe and NATO, cooperate in many fields and share common political views about the Balkans, and the world. Greece and Italy are leading supporters of the integration of the Western Balkan states to the Euro-Atlantic family.
Due to the strong cultural and historical ties between the two nations, from ancient to modern times (Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome laid the foundations of the Western Civilization and the common heritage strengthened further the bonds between the two nations), Greece and Italy today enjoy excellent diplomatic relations and consider each other a brother nation. In modern times, both countries established diplomatic relations in 1861, immediately upon Italy’s unification. Today, many Greeks live in Italy and many Italians live in Greece.
Greece has an embassy in Rome, 2 general consulates in Milan and Naples, a consulate in Venice, and 11 honorary consulates in Trieste (General), Turin (General), Ancona, Catania, Livorno, Bari, Bologna, Brindisi, Florence, Palermo, Perugia, and a Port Consulate in Genova. Italy has an embassy in Athens, and 15 honorary consulates in Alexandroupoli, Kefalonia, Chania, Chios, Corfu, Corinth, Ioannina, Heraklion, Kavala, Larissa, Patras, Rhodes, Thessaloniki, Santorini, and Volos.
Bilateral relations & cooperation
The 20th century relations were difficult during the inter war period (Corfu incident, the occupation of the Dodecanese) and being enemies during World War II (Greco-Italian War). The after war period saw much better relations, until now relations are excellent, due to the common interests and shared heritage of both countries. Both countries are full members of many international organizations, including NATO, the European Union, the Council of Europe, the OECD and the Union for the Mediterranean. Greece is one of Italy's main trade partners and both states are co-operating in many fields, including judicial, scientific and educational, and on mutual tourism development, as both countries have a heavy industry in tourism. There are regular high-level visits between the two countries, and frequent contacts between the two countries ministries and agencies on various matters concerning individual sectors. Big projects currently in running between the two countries include the Greece–Italy pipeline (which is part of the Interconnector Turkey-Greece-Italy pipeline (ITGI)), and the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP).
- Economic Cooperation (1949)
- Avoidance of double Taxation (1964)
- Delimitation of Continental Shelf Boundaries (1977)
- Protection of the Ionian Sea Marine Environment (1979)
- Cooperation against Terrorism, Organised Crime, and Drug Trafficking (1986)
- January 2006; State Visit of President of the Hellenic Republic Mr. Karolos Papoulias to Rome.
- December 2006; Visit of the Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi to Athens.
- March 2007; Official Visit of Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis to Rome.
- August 2007; Meeting of Greek Foreign Minister with Italian counterpart Massimo D'Alema in Rome.
- September 2008; State visit of President of the Italian Republic Mr. Giorgio Napolitano to Athens.
- August 2012; Visit of the Greek Prime Minister Mr. Antonis Samaras to Rome.
- September 2012; Visit of President of the Hellenic Republic Mr. Karolos Papoulias to Italy.
The Italian port cities of Bari, Brindisi, Ancona, Venice and Triest in the Adriatic Sea's Italian coast are connected in an every day basis via passenger Ferries and Freight Ferries, with the Greek port cities of Corfu, Patras, Igoumenitsa and Kalamata, allowing for better transport times by skipping the Balkan peninsula.
- Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs about relations with Italy
- Greek embassy in Rome (in Italian only)
- Italian embassy in Athens