08-06-2023 by Freddie del Curatolo
We have heard a lot of talk, just as in over 30 years there have been meetings, projects, round tables, comparisons, allocations of funds, land acquisitions, compensations, proposals and counter-proposals. But never, as this time, has a Kenyan foreign minister spoken directly and fully, in Rome, about the expansion and adaptation of Malindi International Airport for flights from Italy, direct or indirect, with a deputy minister of our government.
Confirmation of this conversation, on the sidelines of other important agreements between Italy and Kenya, starting with the unblocking of construction work on the dams in the north of the country, already anticipated by President Mattarella last March during his visit to Nairobi, came directly from the Kenyan minister Alfred Mutua, after yesterday's Capitoline meeting with Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani and especially with the deputy minister of Economy and Finance, Maurizio Leo.
"We also discussed the expansion of the Malindi airport, so as to facilitate direct flights from Italy, which is the key to revitalising and growing tourism and the entire supply chain in Kilifi County and the entire country," Mutua wrote on his tweeter profile, posting photos of the meeting with Leo.
Among the politicians who have pushed to put the issue of the Malindi international airport on the table in the Italian-Kenyan negotiations is Deputy Minister of Economy and Finance Maurizio Leo, a great lover of Kenya and Malindi, where he has a home, and a long-time sponsor of Italian tourism on the Kenyan coast.
There is another piece of data that bodes well, and that is the resumption of good relations between Rome and Nairobi, sealed not only by Mattarella and Ruto, but by the African country's need to find partners with whom to develop the country's great unexpressed potential and give respite from galloping inflation and the economic crisis, making it attractive again to international companies and reliable for new loans from monetary funds.
This time too, we will watch and report back, in the hope that as the other spheres move, something more practical and decisive will happen.
by Freddie del Curatolo
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