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G20 foreign ministers meet in Matera, Italy

B“Area Camper Matera” is not very busy these days. Donna Michela, who runs a family business, sighs that business is progressing slowly. The pandemic and blockade have hit the tourism industry throughout Italy, especially in the “Deep South”. There is a long way from the northern and central metropolitan areas, attracting fewer foreign tourists here. Since the city of Basilicata and Plovdiv in Bulgaria became the European Capital of Culture in 2019, the situation in Matera today is quieter than before a single “year of prosperity”: a pandemic is closely followed.

Matthias Rub

Political journalists based in Rome, Italy, Vatican, Albania and Malta.

Italy will assume the chairmanship of the major industrialization and emerging countries of the G20 in 2021. The Roman government has invited people from the South to participate in the first face-to-face meeting of the G20 foreign ministers and development ministers in 2021. Two years. The conference is not only held in Matera, the “Stone City” with the famous Sassi Caves. Bari and Brindisi in the neighbourhood of Apulia should also get something from the meeting: development ministers gathered for their own meetings.

“Currently, only methods that work quickly can help.”

Mayor Domenico Bennardi calculated before the meeting on Tuesday that 500 delegation members and 150 journalists would bring 1.3 million euros in “direct economic benefits” to the city of Matera. On the other hand, “centro storico” and Sassi are closed to tourists during the day. Many shops and restaurants in the old town were closed on Tuesday. Hundreds of police and military police, some of them on horseback, are on duty. The helicopter hovered over the city all day.

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Rome puts its G20 chairmanship year on three pillars: people, planet, and prosperity. At the G20 “World Health Summit” held in Rome in May, 20 countries accounting for 80% of the global economic power, 75% of world trade, and 60% of the world’s population agreed to cooperate more closely in a pandemic such as the corona. Agreeing in a crisis like this. Accordingly, no more export bans or blockades should be imposed on the supply chain of medical products as in previous months. At the Rome meeting, vaccine manufacturers also assured poorer countries that they will provide more than 1 billion doses of coronavirus vaccine by the end of the year.

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