Pietro Campilli was born in Frascati, on November 30, 1891. As a young man, he was an active member of the Italian Catholic University Federation and, already in the years preceding World War I, he was an important member of numerous Catholic organizations working socio-economic issues: he was among the leaders of the Federation of Agricultural Unions and of the Production and Work Cooperatives.
In 1918 Campilli was secretary of the Italian Banking Federation and one of the founders of the Italian Popular Party.
During the years of the Fascisr regime, he maintained a low profile, working as an entrepreneur and expert economist.
In 1943, he took part in the creation of the Christian Democratic Party. He also gave his fundamental contribution to the drafting of the pamphlet "Reconstructive Ideas," especially with regard to all issues of economic policy included in the programmatic scheme of the Christian Democrats.
From 1946 he was Minister of Foreign Trade (second De Gasperi government) - In this function, he accompanied De Gasperi to Washington to negotiate the loan of the Import-Export Bank. The trip would be fundamental to open the way to the exit of the Italian Left from the government and therefore to Italy's participation in the Marshall Plan. From February 1947, Campilli became Minister of Finance and Treasury (third De Gasperi government).
From 1947, Campilli headed the Italian delegation to the first Conference for European Economic Cooperation (CCEE), and then became Italy's representative to the Organization for European Economic Cooperation (OECE). At the domestic level, Campilli encouraged the Christian Democrat government to prioritize meeting America's main demands, namely monetary stability and trade liberalization.
In October 1947, Campilli was in Washington, where he stressed the urgent need for Italy to obtain aid before the Marshall Plan came into effect. On the same occasion, Campilli established important contacts with the American private financial world to solicit investments in the peninsula.
Starting in 1948, with the arrival of the first ERP funds, Campilli headed the administration of the aid plan and the management of American loans to Italy.
During the 1950s, Campilli was first Minister of Industry and Commerce, and then Minister for the Cassa del Mezzogiorno. He would later become president of the European Investment Bank and then of the CNEL (National Council for Economy and Labour), a position he held until his death in Rome, in 1974.
Alcide De Gasperi
Italian Democratic Christian politician and prime minister
Pietro Campilli, storia.camera.it
Parisella, Alberto. "Pietro Campilli," in G. Campanini e F. Traniello (eds.), Dizionario storico dei movimento cattolico in Italia 1860-1980 III, Le figure rappresentative, 1, Casale Monferrato 1984, pp. 157-159.
Campilli, Pietro L’Italia e l’ERP, in Documenti del Piano Marshall, Vallecchi, Firenze 1948.
Campilli, Pietro. Per la salvezza dell’Italia e dell’Europa. L’iniziativa Marshall e l’impegno del popolo italiano, Seli, Milano 1948.
Ventresca, Roberto. "Prove tecniche d'integrazione. L'Italia e l'OECE negli anni della prima legislatura repubblicana (1947-1953)." PhD Diss., Università di Padova, 2019.
Fauri, Francesca. Il Piano Marshall e l'Italia. Bologna: Il Mulino, 2010.