Chinese President Xi Jinping (pictured with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte) is wrapping up his trip to Europe on a mission to strengthen Beijing's ties to the region.
The Conservative Party says the trip is an extension of China's push to extend its power and influence around the globe and all the more reason why a royal commission should be held into Chinese Communist Party influence here in Australia.
To show your support, click the box below:
The ABC reports, Presdient Xi's trip was described as being of "historic significance" to China, according to state media, with the country's leader visiting Italy, France and Monaco and signing a series of multi-billion-dollar deals over the past few days.
But one aspect of Mr Xi's trip has Western observers and European allies particularly concerned — Italy's decision to sign up to Beijing's controversial Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), as well as more than two dozen other trade and infrastructure agreements.
In doing so, Italy has become the first Group of Seven nation — which includes powerful economies like the UK, the USA, Japan, Germany, France, Italy, and Canada — to join the initiative, which was previously rejected by most Western countries, including Australia.
The BRI under Mr Xi has been described by analysts as one of the largest and most ambitious foreign policy and economic plans in modern history, as it aims to re-establish a "silk road" connecting China's underdeveloped regions to Europe via Asia.
While supporters of the initiative maintain that it is a positive step to open trade with the economic superpower, there are fears about the initiative itself and what it means for Western sovereignty and global security.
The deal with Italy will offer China strategic access into landlocked Mediterranean countries including Austria, Hungary and the Czech Republic, however no details have been released on how the ports will be managed.
To find out more about our policies, click here.
To subscribe to Conservative Party leader Cory Bernardi's free, weekly podcast, click here.
To donate to the Conservative Party, click here.
To join the Conservatives, click here.
Share this important information with your family, friends and mates - Like Australian Conservatives on Facebook to stay updated.