Doing business in Italy

European companies wishing to operate in Italy

The European Union ensures service providers the right to practice their activity in other Member States, with the possibility of choosing between establishment and temporary and occasional cross-border provision of services.

The freedom of establishment involves the actual pursuit of an economic activity through a fixed establishment for an indefinite period; it requires integration into the economy in the Member State and it involves the acquisition of customers in that State from the basis of a stable professional domicile.

The freedom to provide services is characterised by the absence of a stable and continuous participation in the economic life of the host Member State. The distinction between establishment and provision of services needs to be made on a case-by-case basis, taking into account not only the duration but also the regularity, periodicity and continuity of the provision of services. For his cross-border activity, a service provider may use an infrastructure in the host Member State without being established there.

Service providers established in another Member State of the European Union who would like to practice their activity in Italy, either as establishment or cross-border provision of services, can contact PSC Italy for information or assistance (

PSC Italy provides information on the relevant legislation and contact details of the competent authorities. It also deals with requests regarding requirements, procedures and formalities to be fulfilled in order to carry on business in Italy.

Gateway to Europe, Points of Single Contact of all the EU Member States.

ECC Net Italy is part of the European Consumer Centre Network. It provides free advice and assistance for cross-border consumer issues.

The EC Services Directive for the internal market (portal available only in Italian).