Yesterday, the Permanent Representative of Italy to the International Seabed Authority (ISA) and to the United Nations, H.E. Ms. Mariangela Zappia, presented her credentials to ISA Secretary-General, H.E. Mr. Michael W. Lodge, during a virtual ceremony.

Ambassador Zappia is a career diplomat with over thirty years of experience. She has been Permanent Representative of Italy to the United Nations in New York since August 2018 and became Permanent Representative to ISA on 17 April 2021.

“Italy has been a strong supporter of the International Seabed Authority since its very creation, being a committed member of the Organization since its birth in 1994 and having served as a member of Group A of the Council for six mandates. Italy recognizes the value of the International Seabed Authority in the framework of the international ocean governance and considers it a beacon of advanced scientific marine research and technological development,” said Ambassador Zappia on the occasion of the ceremony.

Secretary-General Lodge welcomed Ambassador Zappia as the new Permanent Representative of Italy to ISA. “I welcome Italy’s long-standing commitment to the mandate of ISA. As a leader in ocean technology and scientific research, as well as a country with a long history of engagement in the law of the sea. I look forward to Italy’s continued contribution to all aspects of the work of ISA and the sustainable development of deep ocean resources for future generations,” he said.

Prior to this assignment, Ambassador Zappia served as Diplomatic Advisor and G7-G20 Sherpa to the Prime Minister of Italy from 2016 to 2018, and as Italy’s Permanent Representative to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Brussels from 2014 to 2016. She was the first woman in her country to hold these two positions. From 2011 until 2014, Ms. Zappia was Head of the European Union delegation to the United Nations and other international organizations in Geneva. Between 2007 and 2011, she was Minister Plenipotentiary at Italy’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations in Geneva and first Counsellor at its Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York from 2000 to 2003. 

Ms. Zappia held various positions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Rome, including Head of the Mediterranean, the Middle East and Balkans Department for Development Cooperation, and Counsellor in charge of media relations at the Press and Information Service in the Office of the Spokesperson of the Minister (1994-1997). While first Counsellor at the Italian Embassy in Brussels, she was detached on a special assignment to the NATO media taskforce during the conflict in Kosovo (1997-2000).

She also previously held different positions at the Consulate General in New York (1990-1993) and the Italian Embassy in Dakar (1986-1990). She joined the Foreign Service in 1983.

Ms. Zappia holds a master’s degree in Political Science and International Relations from the University of Florence and a post-graduate degree in Diplomatic and International Relations from the same university. She has followed periodic high-level training courses on diplomatic practice and management at the Diplomatic Academy of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Rome.

For media enquiries, please contact:

Ms. Stefanie Neno, Communications Specialist, ISA,


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