Mumbai: Describing the current moment as a significant progress in the collaborative relationship between India and Italy, Italian Ambassador to India, Vincenzo De Luca said on Thursday that the two countries are set to engage in more comprehensive cooperation in strategic and sensitive sectors.

The occasion was marked by the Italian Navy's recently commissioned ship, the Francesco Morosini patrol vessel, currently docked in Mumbai harbor as part of its maiden voyage after it started its first sail in April this year.

The Italian envoy along with the ship commander Giovanni Monno held a press conference in Mumbai, where they emphasised enhancing India-Italy ties.

Addressing a press conference, the Italian envoy said, “This is a great honour and pleasure. This is one of the flagships of the Italian Navy. In this period, there has been enhancement in the relationship between Italy and India”.

“In March this year, a bilateral summit was held between the two Prime Ministers — Narendra Modi and Georgia Miloni — for the first time we elevated our diplomatic partnership to the strategic level,” he added.

Luca further said that under the strategic partnership, India and Italy will cooperate more closely in the strategic and sensitive sectors

“Strategic partnership means that India and Italy will cooperate more closely in the strategic and sensitive sectors, from defence to cyber to space, advanced technology, emerging technology. This is really a leap forward in the partnership between the two countries. Today, is the celebration of this partnership by the visit of Francesco Morosini petrol vessel to India,” he said.

The Italian envoy added that they are looking forward to cooperating on the ‘Make in India’ mission in different sectors, and added that discussions will take place in near future.

“We are looking to co-operate in ‘Make in India’ mission of India specially in torpedo, Helicopters, Electronic warfare, sectors. Soon, MoUs in defence sectors will be signed by the two Defence ministers,” Luca said.

He added, “We will not discuss these strategic partnerships on the sidelines of G20, as there is no opportunity for Defence Ministers, but we will do this in the near future”.

Notably, Italian PM Giorgia Meloni was on her maiden visit to India in March this year.

Both leaders underscored their firm commitment to democracy, freedom, human rights and the rule of law as key values in promoting peace, stability and development. They welcomed the high degree of convergence in the political, economic and strategic interests of the two countries that provides an enduring basis for a long-term relationship.