"I sincerely hope that we will come to canceling [anti-Russian] sanctions as soon as possible, and that economic partnership between Europe and Russia, as well as Italy and Russia will continue to grow," Pier Carlo Padoan said, answering a RIA Novosti question at a press briefing in Rome.
He stressed that many European and Italian businesses operate in Russia, with some of them experiencing a decrease in productivity, and some even having to close.
"That is why, it is obviously in the common interests of Europe and Italy to normalize relations with Russia," the minister said.
Moscow has repeatedly denied the accusations, and in response introduced in August 2014 a one-year ban on imports of certain food products from the states that established restrictions.
Western sanctions against Moscow are set to expire in July. In March, EU leaders decided to keep the sanctions in place until a February ceasefire in Ukraine is fully implemented.