(AGI) Rho (Milan), Oct 13 - Italian energy giant Eni called forlong-term investment in development cooperation during an eventorganised by the company at the Milan Expo 2015. Speaking onTuesday at the Casa Corriere during the NAOC/Green RiverProject Farmers Day, Lapo Pistelli, senior vice president ofEni's Stakeholder Relations for Business Development Support,called on policy-makers not to cut development cooperationfunds. He said: "As long as Italian citizens perceivedevelopment cooperation as a contribution to cuts in lean timeswe won't get anywhere; instead, we must understand thatdevelopment cooperation is a long-term investment." Turning to the subject of Africa, Mr Pistelli said: "Getting acontinent to change requires consistency: I am happy that thegovernment jumps on any opportunity to turn the spotlight onAfrica, insisting that Italians must be their partners." MrPistelli went on to explain that the Green River Project (GRP)"has affected more than half a million people and hascontributed to the setting up of cooperatives and theirmechanisation, in addition to benefiting specific civilinfrastructure interlinking agricultural activities that weinstalled." He added that the GRP is not "a static undertakingbut evolves in parallel with the communities". He went on torecall Eni's commitment in other nations, especially in Ghanawhere Eni is operating in four or five remote regions that haveno basic medical facilities and where it is building them. Hesaid: "If you take a look at what other major oil companies aredoing in Africa, you won't see any of this. The new cooperationis the following: we are no longer implementing projects of thetype that if you disconnect the life-line the project dies; theproject must stand on its own feet and be able to go on withits own resources." (AGI). .