On June 1, 2012, Vice Foreign Minister Song Tao at invitation attended the Italian National Day reception held by Italian Ambassador to China Attilio Massimo Iannucci. Song said Italy is an important cooperative partner of China in Europe and against the background of the current grim European debt situation, Sino-Italian cooperation is facing new challenges and opportunities. China is willing to continue to support the efforts of the countries concerned to deal with the sovereign debt problems and is willing to further expand pragmatic cooperation with Italy and to enhance the level of bilateral relations. Attilio Massimo Iannucci said that the Italian side is very open to cooperation with China and is willing to deepen bilateral cooperation in the fields of economy, trade, science, technology and environmental protection and promote the development of EU-China relations.
Song also expressed condolences over the earthquake that struck northern Italy recently.