Already this year, Chinese companies have splashed out several billion euros acquiring stakes in or control of Italian companies ranging from a venerable old fashion house to some of its biggest energy companies as well as to the producer of a well-known olive oil brands.
That has vindicated Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s decision to send an “open-for-business” signal to Beijing after he came to power in February.
“The Chinese were knocking on our door, but we were incapable of opening it,” he said. “We were too busy navel-gazing.”
Renzi, 39, is attempting to implement reforms designed to make the country more attractive to investors.
“We have to become more open,” he said. In Rome last week he declared: “We must bring more China to Italy and take more Italy to China.”Fashion and olive oil ,