[Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton (1998, Book I)]
[May 6, 1998]
[Pages 706-707]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office www.gpo.gov]

Joint Statement: The United States and the Republic of Italy: A New 
Partnership for a New Century
May 6, 1998

    The United States and Italy have built a strong, genuine and 
enduring relationship during more than fifty years of close cooperation. 
Today President Clinton and Prime Minister Prodi assessed the new opportunities and challenges before 
both countries as this century comes to a close and a new millennium 
begins. They agreed on a common agenda to create an even closer 
partnership in the 21st century.
    Transatlantic solidarity remains the indispensable cornerstone of 
the U.S.-Italian relationship and the basis for a Europe secure, 
prosperous and free. As Allies in NATO, participants in the Organization 
for Security and Cooperation in Europe and partners in the U.S.-EU New 
Transatlantic Agenda, the United States and Italy reaffirm their 
confidence in a new Europe and a strong, enduring transatlantic 
community. Our shared commitment to build a better future does not stop 
at Europe's borders, but extends to the Middle East, Africa, Asia and 
Latin America.
    As we move into the next century, the world will require increased 
international cooperation to meet common challenges, foster economic 
development and uphold democracy and human rights. In pursuing these 
goals, we reaffirm our strong support for the international institutions 
we worked to create more than fifty years ago. The United Nations and 
the Bretton Woods institutions must continue to play a key and 
reinforced role in tomorrow's increasingly interdependent world.
    Joint leadership in political and economic areas is essential as we 
strive to enhance European security and address new challenges around 
the globe. We look forward to a historic NATO Summit in Washington in 
April 1999, which will celebrate NATO's fifty years as the most 
successful alliance in history, welcome three new members and prepare 
NATO for another fifty years of close transatlantic cooperation. We 
recognize that maintaining our security will require vigorous efforts by 
the range of Euro-Atlantic institutions to promote stability in 
Southeastern Europe and the Mediterranean.
    An even stronger and more effective Organization for Security and 
Cooperation in Europe is a central part of our vision for a more 
democratic and stable Euro-Atlantic region. We will work closely within 
the OSCE to focus on ways to spread the security, democracy, freedom and 
prosperity enjoyed by Western Europe over the past fifty years to other 
areas of Europe in the coming years.
    Europe is pursuing accelerated political and economic integration 
through the European Union, which the United States has consistently 
supported. Both the United States and Italy recognize the historic step 
just taken by Italy and other EU Members to create an Economic and 
Monetary Union. Italy and Europe can benefit from a successful EMU 
underpinned by sound macroeconomic and structural policies, which would 
also be in the best interests of the United States. Indeed, a successful 
EMU has the potential to benefit the entire transatlantic economic 
relationship, as will our shared determination to reduce barriers to 
trade and to work together in the WTO to promote multilateral trade 
liberalization. The EU, which demonstrates so clearly the vital link 
between democracy and prosperity, will become an even more dynamic 
entity and partner for the United States as it welcomes new members and 
projects increasing stability throughout the Continent.
    We will strengthen our overall cooperation through these 
institutions and other mechanisms to enhance European security. We will 
consult closely on the most effective ways to prevent

[[Page 707]]

new conflicts and address threats to security that do arise, as we have 
done in Bosnia and Albania and are doing now in Kosovo. We agree that 
the situation in Kosovo is increasingly serious. The decisions taken by 
the Contact Group in Rome must be implemented. Absent dialogue, the 
conflict will only deepen and spill over, threatening regional security. 
We will continue raising the pressure on Belgrade if it continues to 
obstruct a political resolution. We will also continue efforts underway 
to promote stability in Southeastern Europe through the Southeast Europe 
Cooperation Initiative and other means.
    We are committed to expanding the spectrum of our bilateral 
cooperation in the years ahead. We will increase already strong efforts 
to stem the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. 
Our cooperation on law enforcement and judicial matters, particularly in 
the fight against organized crime, terrorism, illegal arms trading, drug 
trafficking and alien smuggling, is exemplary. Our statement today on 
increased efforts to combat international trafficking in women and 
children launches our intensified cooperation in these areas. We will 
also increase our efforts to promote safety on the high seas through the 
International Maritime Organization.
    We agreed to begin negotiations next month in Washington aimed at 
concluding an Open Skies and aviation agreement as soon as possible. We 
have also created a joint working group to enhance U.S.-Italian 
aerospace cooperation and take advantage of opportunities that will 
benefit both countries.
    One of the strongest pillars of our science and technology 
relationship has been space cooperation. We welcome recent achievements 
in this area, including the successful launch of the Cassini mission to 
Saturn and agreements for cooperation on the International Space 
Station. We look forward to new initiatives in astronomy, planetary 
exploration, earth science, biomedical research and commercialization of 
    We also have made significant efforts to expand our longstanding 
collaboration in biomedical sciences and to jointly address global 
health concerns. Our respective institutes for health have recently 
committed to measures which will enhance opportunities for inter-
institute collaborative projects in a range of fields, including HIV/
AIDS, aging and cancer. We look forward to the implementation of these 
projects as well as to joint efforts in the fight against malaria, 
particularly in sub-Saharan Africa.
    Noting our shared objectives to protect the global climate and 
environment, we are proud of recent agreements to foster joint 
development of geothermal, biomass, solar and other applied technologies 
to reduce emissions, improve air and water quality and conserve scarce 
natural resources. Mindful of the recent declaration of the G-8 
environment ministers at Leeds, we will together address the risks posed 
by climate change, enforce multilateral environmental agreements, 
protect marine diversity and reduce threats to the health of our 
    Together the United States and Italy, working with our partners in 
Europe and elsewhere, have the opportunity to shape a future that is 
more secure, peaceful, free, and brighter for all. We pledge to do all 
we can to make the most of this chance to build an enduring legacy of 
peace and prosperity for the 21st century.

Note: An original was not available for verification of the content of 
this joint statement.