Italy and France sign Quirinale Treaty in Rome

Relations between France and Italy improve under Draghi.

Italy and France have strengthened their bilateral ties in an historic pact signed by Italian premier Mario Draghi and French president Emmanuel Macron in Rome on Friday.

The so-called Quirinale Treaty is hailed as the start of a new Franco-Italy axis as German chancellor exits the stage after 16 years of warm relations with French leaders.

The new pact will see high-level cooperation across a wide range of sectors including defence, trade, economy, migration, energy, technology, research and culture.

In addition, French and Italian ministers will attend each other's cabinet meetings once every quarter.

"The Treaty of Enhanced Cooperation we signed this morning marks a historic moment in relations between our two countries" - said Draghi - "France and Italy are further consolidating their diplomatic, commercial, political and cultural ties." 

The move is seen as repairing a rift between the two countries after relations soured in 2018 under the then Italian government composed of the populist Movimento 5 Stelle and the far-right Lega.

However relations between France and Italy have been restored fully under the premiership of Draghi whose pro-European views are aligned with those of Macron.