|Republic of Genoa|
|Repúbrica de Zêna|
Genoa (Genoese: Zêna) is a country located in the northwestern region of Italy. It's territory is separated into two by the Ligurian sea, Mainland Genoa and the island of Corsega. Genoa was one of the premier maritime powers and Europe, having established several port colonies in the Black Sea, North Africa, Central America, and the Pacific. In the present-day, Genoa is one of the three main stakeholders of the jointly-controlled Panama Canal (along with Mexico and Colombia), and still controls the special overseas territory of Saint George in the Caribbean, Panama in Central America, and the Genoese Pacific Islands in the east Pacific. It has a population of over 1.7 million people.
The Republic of Genoa started as a medieval maritime republic in the 11th century. It became a significant commercial power in the Mediterranean by the late middle ages and became one of the major financial centers in Europe by the 17th century.
Throughout its history, the republic established numerous colonies worldwide. The first colonies were established in Europe during the 15th to 16th centuries, specifically on the Mediterranean and Black Seas. Some of them had been founded directly under the patronage of the republican government to support the economy of the local merchants. In contrast, others were feudal possessions of Genoese nobles or had been founded by powerful private institutions. In 1542, Tabarka was awarded to Genoa by the Ottoman Bey of Tunis as a concession to the Genoese Lomellini family after helping capture a Turkish pirate. Since the 16th century, Genoa had continued good relations with the Ottoman Empire, eventually gaining full trading rights in Tunisia.
Genoa in the Americas
The 18th century saw Genoa's influence and territory extend outside of the Mediterranean. In 1757, they formally gained Panama from Spain. The settlement of Panamá was initially established by the Spanish in 1519 on the Pacific Coast. Although administered by the Spanish, Genoese merchants were able to dominate the trade in the city due to generous concessions made by the Spaniards (who had the Genoese Republic as an ally and their main banking base).
Continued favorable relations between Spain and Genoa allowed the Genoese to be multiple granted trade charters in the city throughout the 16th and 17th centuries. In 1757, the city was officially transferred to Genoa through the Treaty of Genova, as a Spanish gesture of goodwill for Genoa's banking support to Spain during the Great Silesian War. Although this treaty had confirmed the Genoese ownership of the city, Genoese merchants already had de facto control over trade and governance in Panama decades before.
It was also in 1757 that Austria granted Genoa the island of Sainte-Lucie (which they renamed to Saint George Island), which was taken from France after the Great Silesian War. A portion of Saint George's economic success from its sugarcane plantations went to the development, expansion, and further fortification of the City of Panama.
The Panama Canal
Since the mid-19th century, the governments of Colombia, Mexico, and Genoa had plans of a joint-effort canal project in the Isthmus of Panamá. Enthusiasm for the planned canal came from the need to escape the trade embargoes imposed upon the Latin American countries by the Kingdom of the Netherlands and New Netherland, as well as the need for a shorter route from the Caribbean Sea to the Pacific Ocean. The project had used Genoa (through Panama) as the banking base for its financial aspects, and had a several engineers from Genoa involved. At the same time, the Dutch nations were building a separate canal in Boschland, Central America. However, the Panama Canal was completed a few months before the Dutch canal was.To this day, Genoa still remains one of the influential nations in Europe. They have cordial relations with Franceand the Ottoman Empire. Although they have a historical rivalry with Venice, Genoa did not not intervene in the Alps War (1911-1912) between Austria and Venice, and remained neutral in the Great War.