Italy at a glance – October 2022

These emails are designed for those investing into Italy and those who have plans to do so. We aim to keep the points short and sweet, and to merely list snippets of relevant but easy to read information.

October 2022

  1. VAT in Italy. The Italian standard VAT rate is 22%. Reduced rates are provided for specifically listed goods and services, with a lower rate of 4% for listed food, drinks, agricultural products, and e-books/e-periodicals that meet certain requirements.
  2. An Italian codice fiscale is always a good idea. As a foreigner, you will need an Italian codice fiscale to rent or buy a property, or to set up a local company. You can apply for your Italian codice fiscale for free at any tax office (Agenzia delle Entrate) in Italy or through an Italian consular office or embassy.
  3. Italy has five autonomous regions. Italy is divided into 20 regions. Five of these regions enjoy a special autonomous status for historical or geographical reasons. Sicilia, Sardegna, Valle d’Aosta, Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Trentino-Alto Adige have a special legislative, administrative and financial status.
  4. The Italian economy is still very much “family-centred”. In Italy, there are around 101,000 family businesses, representing more than 70% of the total number of small enterprise businesses. It is also remarkable that more than 25% of Italian family businesses are fully managed by senior family members (aged over 70), not by external managers.
  5. Italy has a very high concentration of lawyers. Between 2000 and 2020, the number of lawyers registered to the bar association in Italy increased twofold. In 2000, Italy counted approximately 120,000 lawyers. This figure exceeded 245,000 in 2020.
  6. Italy still has more world heritage sites than any other country in the world. Italy has 58 UNESCO World Heritage sites. 53 are cultural and 5 are natural. However, China has recently reached the second position with 56 sites.  Will Italy manage to retain first position next year?
  7. Italy has an ageing population and very low birth-rates. According to recent data published by World Population Review, Italy’s population continues to age. The country has one of the lowest birth-rates in the world. In 2022, Italy has experienced a negative trend of -1.62% of births decline from 2021.
  8. The true origin of pizza. The origin of pizza with tomato sauce dates back to the mid-18th century in the Kingdom of Naples, where it became very popular among both the Neapolitan nobility and the city lower classes. In 1889, the pizza-maker Raffaele Esposito created the “pizza Margherita” in honour of queen Margherita of Savoia.
  9. Keep out of fountains in Italy. Heat waves or not, you should be aware that it is absolutely not permitted to dive into public fountains in Italy or even to refresh your legs and feet. You will be heavily fined.
  10. How old is Italian Opera? The first opera can be traced back to Italy at the start of the 17th century. Opera is thought to have been inspired from Ancient Greek drama that punctuated spoken drama with song, dance and instrumental music.

This message is not given in the form of an opinion, legal opinion or tax advice. If any of the information provided is of interest or relevance to you or your company we would strongly recommend you contact us or another qualified professional for specific advice. 

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