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VERONA, October 23. /TASS/. Italy is ready to back enterprises, which cooperate with Russia, the country’s Economic Development Minister Federica Guidi said on Friday on the sidelines of an economic forum in Verona bringing together politicians and business executives of Russia and Italy.
"Italy is ready to back enterprises, which are cooperating with Russia," she said, adding that the country’s government is ready to contribute to exchange of technologies between Russian and Italian companies as well as import substitution operations in Russia.
Guidi also called for focusing on cooperation in the sectors, which are not under sanctions.
Italy observes the sanctions the European Union imposed against Russia, but it will work to see the sanctions lifted, Italian Minister of Economic Development Frederica Guidi said.
"Of course, we will be observing the sanctions, but we are not just partner countries, we are the countries that have a long history of friendship to share. We will continue working to see the sanctions regime abolished," Guidi told reporters.
"Italy is interested to see the situation with sanctions [against Russia] settled as soon as possible. We hope a diplomatic dialogue will continue, the Russian market is extremely important for a number of our industrial sectors, we want to get back to the development of partnership," the minister told the forum.
"We continue active cooperation in the spheres not affected by sanctions, which is a positive moment," she continued.
The sanctions blocked financing of certain investment projects and were hitting the agricultural sector (because of the Russian food embargo), the minister said.
"We had to pay a political and economic price for the sanctions," Guidi said. "The only way to overcome this situation is to create conditions for a growth in those sectors that are not covered by the sanctions," the minister said.
For incorporation of Crimea after last year’s coup in Ukraine, Russia came under sanctions on the part of the United States and many European countries. The restrictive measures were soon intensified following Western and Ukrainian claims that Russia supported militias in self-proclaimed republics in Ukraine’s southeast and was involved in destabilization of Ukraine.
As countermeasures, Russia imposed on August 6, 2014 a one-year ban on imports of beef, pork, poultry, fish, cheeses, fruit, vegetables and dairy products from Australia, Canada, the European Union, the United States and Norway.