The 30th Naval Group, composed of aircraft carrier Cavour, supply ship Etna, frigate Bergamini and patrol ship Borsini, left Italy on 13th November 2013, setting sail towards the Suez Canal to start the ' Country on the Move' Naval Campaign across the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden, the Indian Ocean and the Arabic Gulf, which ended with the circumnavigation of Africa.

The Naval Group returned to Italy on 9th April 2014, after 149 days and after having sailed more than 18,000 nautical miles - about 36,000 kilometers – and having visited 20 different nations, with 21 port visits.

This Campaign was a daring and ambitious initiative, and numerous goals were actually reached, leveraging the dual use capabilities of the Italian Navy ships, which, thanks to their multirole nature, are able to conduct both military and non-military activities. The mission succeeded in boosting the reputation of Italy in the international arena and in particular in the strategic areas that were crossed and visited during the journey.

On the whole, considering the 4 ships of the Naval Group, approximately 1,200 military personnel, including about 100 women, took part in the Campaign. This unique mix of hearts, minds and hands, working together and in synergy with personnel from nonprofit charity organizations, Volunteer Nurses of the Italian Red Cross and staff of several Italian companies, displayed around the world the Italian excellence in terms of products and capabilities not only in the military and industrial sector, but also with regard to humanitarian assistance, reflecting the sensitivity and solidarity of our Nation with the poorest areas of the world.

The Naval Group's main objectives included:

  • Maritime training in new and challenging environments, including interaction with Allied and friendly Navies;
  • Maritime Security through deterrence, anti-piracy operations, protection of merchant ships and search and rescue, as required;
  • support to the Navies of visited Countries, through cooperation and development of their operational capabilities (Maritime Capability Building), with a positive influence on global security;
  • support to the national foreign policy through 'Naval Diplomacy';
  • Humanitarian Assistance through the employment of teams of volunteer operators from the crews of the Naval Group as well as in cooperation with:
    1. Operation Smile Nonprofit Organization, which performed over 100 maxillofacial surgeries in shipboard operating rooms onboard Aircraft Carrier Cavour, in 6 African countries: Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, South Africa, Ghana, and Algeria;
    2. Francesca RAVA Nonprofit Foundation, which visited an average of 400 kids in every harbour, with the goal to combat childhood blindness, also providing glasses to those in need;
    3. Volunteer Nurses from the Italian Red Cross and medical staff of the Italian Red Cross military corps, fully integrated with both military and civilian medical personnel working in shipboard hospitals.
  • Promotion of the Italian entrepreneurial excellences, with Aircraft Carrier Cavour acting as itinerant trailer for EXPO 2015 (the World Exposition held in 2015 in Milan) - with a special focus on the Arabian Gulf and Africa - and boosting 'made in Italy' products in important emerging markets within a prestigious wholly Italian institutional framework.


Major Italian institutional and trade promotion authorities have believed in this challenge, supporting in different ways the Naval Campaign, with the common goal to promote the great Italian potentialities in the humanitarian, cultural and industrial fields. They include the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Economic Development, Cultural Heritage and Tourism, the Italian Institute for Foreign Trade, EXPO 2015, Fincantieri, Finmeccanica, Agusta Westland, SELEX ES, OTO Melara, WASS, MBDA, Telespazio, FederLegnoArredo, Elettronica SPA, Intermarine, Gruppo Beretta, C.A.B.I. Cattaneo, AVS Group, CIO Iveco – OTO Melara, Pirelli, MES - AID, Piaggio Aero, Blackshape, Sitael, Mermec Group, and GIUSTI DAL COL Società Agricola S.r.l..

30th Italian Naval Group Brochure