Frequently asked questions about doing business in Italy Frequently asked questions about doing business in Italy


Q: I would like to open a clothes shop in Italy. Is authorisation required?

A: In order to start a business activity in Italy, it is necessary to be registered at a Chamber of Commerce. Setting up a permanent organisation can be done by means of ComUnica, which allows to comply with all communication obligations to the competent authorities (ComUnica is valid for tax, social security and welfare purposes) with one single declaration submitted electronically. ComUnica allows the applicant to receive his VAT identification number and also to fulfil the obligation of registering at INAIL and INPS for compulsory insurance and pension.

As a matter of principle, in order to work in retail trade (if practiced in small shops: “esercizi di vicinato”) it is not necessary to obtain an authorisation: it is sufficient to submit prior notice (SCIA: “segnalazione certificata di inizio attività”) to the competent authority. For retail trade, the competent authority is the “Comune” (local authority) where you would like to start the activity.

More information as well as application forms and other documents to be submitted can be found on the website of the local authority, through which all procedures can be completed electronically.

Contact details and website of the competent authority can be found through the following web page: Local authorities for licences and permits

The prior notice can also be submitted together with ComUnica, so that the constitution of the new legal entity and the starting of the economic activity can take place at the same time.
Article 71, para. 1, d. lgs. 59/2010, lays down moral requirements such as the lack of criminal proceedings for misconduct in trade.


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Last updated: 24/01/2017