US embassy cable - 02ROME5697

REENGAGING PM BERLUSCONI ON BIOTECH

Identifier: 02ROME5697
Wikileaks: View 02ROME5697 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Rome
Created: 2002-11-25 09:15:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: EAGR ETRD IT PGOV TBIO EUN
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

C O N F I D E N T I A L ROME 005697 
 
SIPDIS 
 
FOR U/S LARSON AND USTR ZOELLICK FROM AMBASSADOR MEL SEMBLER 
STATE PASS USDA 
STATE PASS USTR 
DEPT ALSO FOR EB-CEKUTA 
USDA FOR FAS/OA/TERPSTRA 
ITP/SHEIKH AND MACKE 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/20/2007 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 02        ROME  05697  251038Z 
TAGS: EAGR, ETRD, IT, PGOV, TBIO, EUN 
SUBJECT: REENGAGING PM BERLUSCONI ON BIOTECH 
 
CLASSIFIED BY: AMBASSADOR MEL SEMBLER, FOR REASONS 1.5 (B) AND (D) 
 
1.  (C) JOINED BY AMBASSADORS HALL AND NICHOLSON I HAD DINNER 
NOVEMBER 12 WITH PRIME MINISTER BERLUSCONI, HIS PRINCIPAL 
ADVISOR GIANNI LETTA, AND SEVERAL OTHERS. WE USED THE 
OPPORTUNITY TO IMPRESS UPON THE PM THE NEGATIVE EFFECT EU 
POLICY WAS HAVING ON THE WILLINGNESS OF AFRICAN COUNTRIES TO 
DISTRIBUTE BIOTECH FOOD TO THEIR STARVING POPULATIONS AND THE 
MORAL IMPLICATIONS OF THESE ACTIONS.  BERLUSCONI AGREED THAT 
ITALY NEEDED TO HAVE A SCIENCE-BASED POLICY, AND SAID HE 
WOULD HELP US WHERE HE COULD WITHIN EU COUNCILS.  I TOLD 
BERLUSCONI PRIVATELY ONCE AGAIN THAT HIS AG MINISTER 
CONTINUED TO DRIVE A BIOTECH POLICY BASED MORE ON EMOTION 
THAN REASON, AND THAT HE AS PM NEEDED TO GET MORE INVOLVED 
PERSONALLY IF HE WANTED TO COUNTER THAT TREND.  HE TOOK THE 
POINT. 
 
2.  (C) BERLUSCONI APPEARED SURPRISED AND CONCERNED WHEN I 
TOLD HIM THAT A WTO CASE WAS A DISTINCT POSSIBILITY IF NO 
SOLUTION TO EUROPEAN INTRANSIGENCE WAS FOUND SOON.  HE 
CLEARLY UNDERSTOOD THE IMPLICATIONS FOR THE UPCOMING ITALIAN 
EU PRESIDENCY, AND ASKED TO BE KEPT INFORMED. 
 
3.  (C) GETTING THE PM'S ATTENTION ON BIOTECH AGAIN IS 
IMPORTANT.  WE NEED TO KEEP HIM ENGAGED, AND ONE WAY TO DO 
THIS IS TO LET HIM KNOW DIRECTLY OUR CONCERNS AS WE MOVE 
TOWARD DECISIONS ABOUT A WTO CASE AND OTHER ASPECTS OF OUR 
BIOTECH POLICY.  IN THE NEXT WEEK, THIS EMBASSY, EMBASSY 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 03        ROME  05697  251038Z 
VATICAN AND FODAG WILL PRESENT BY CABLE, OUR UPDATED AND 
COORDINATED TRI-MISSION PLAN TO ADVANCE USG INTENTS ON 
BIOTECH.  THE PLAN WILL IDENTIFY RESOURCES TO UNDERPIN OUR 
ACTIVITIES.  WE LOOK FORWARD TO YOUR REACTIONS, GUIDANCE, AND 
SUPPORT. 
SEMBLER 
 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
> 
 2002ROME05697 - Classification: CONFIDENTIAL 


Latest source of this page is cablebrowser-2, released 2011-10-04