BUSINESS AND TRADE
Links to business information
|Automatic Teller Machines (ATM)
To find out the locations of ATMs in Italy, click on the link to your credit
card: Visa, Mastercard or American
Banks in Italy are open Monday to Friday from 8.35 am to 13.35 pm and from 15.00 pm to 16.00 pm. Some banks are also open on Saturday morning until 13.30 pm. In some tourist areas they are open non-stop from 8.30 am to 16.00 pm. Banks are closed on Sundays and national holidays and also on the town's patron Saint's day. The afternoon hour may vary from city to city.
Travellers' cheques can be exchanged at most hotels and shops and at the foreign exchange offices in main railway stations and at the airports.
Writing numbers Italian style:
Italian usage is to reverse the use of commas and decimal points: eg. 1,5%; 98,60 F; $3,99; amd lire 2.300.000. Numbers that are written differently here include the one, which looks like a tired seven, the seven whose stem is crossed, and the two, which should be written without a loop at the corner so it isn't mistaken for a seven. On a cheque, the amount of the cheque when written out, contains no capital letters and all the words are connected, eg. "trecewntocinquantamilacinquecentolire". [Source: http://www.italytravelescape.com/Banking%20system%20in%20Italy.htm]
All major credit cards are widely accepted in Italy (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, etc.).
The best rate of exchange you will get in Italy is from the banks. However, the easiest way of making transactions is probably by using credit or debit cards. These, together with your personal identification number (PIN), give you access to cash dispensers (or Bancomat in Italian). All major cards are accepted and ATMs to be found all over Italy, even in small towns. Cards can also be used for cash advances over the counter in banks and for payment in most hotels, restaurants, petrol stations and some shops. For all these transactions you will pay a fee of 1.5%.
You will usually, though not always, pay a small commission when you exchange money using travellers' cheques - around 1% of the amount changed. It is worth knowing that Thomas Cook offices do not charge for cashing their own cheques, while American Express offices do not make any charge for cheques. [Source: http://www.propertyshowrooms.com/italy/guide/banking-in-italy.asp]
Offers information on the monetary policy, statistics and
publications in Italy.
A listing of banks in the country
provided by Qualisteam.
Business and trade
Italy is one of South Africa's leading trading partners. This has been the case for the past five years and in 2001 Italy was the 6th largest trading partner of South Africa. South Africa's main exports to Italy are gold and coal, and also include laminated iron and steel, machines, non-electrical appliances, hides and skins, fruit, granite and wool, while South African imports from Italy consist mainly of machine tools, office and other electronic equipment, industrial machinery and telecommunications equipment.
In recent years, the number of bilateral visits by business and government delegations has increased significantly and it is expected that these visits will further strengthen the strong foundation upon which economic relations are based. During the past twelve months, President Mbeki and Prime Minister Berlusconi have visited the respective countries, while the Italian Deputy Minister of Productive Affairs led a business delegation to South Africa in November 2002, as a follow-up to the business delegation led by President Ciampi, during his State Visit to South Africa, in March 2002.
Source: Department of Foreign Affairs
Some of the other major imported goods into Italy include:
- Engineering products
- Transport equipment
- Energy products (gas)
- Minerals and nonferrous metals
- Textiles and clothing
Source: Economy Watch
Non tariff barriers
As it is a member of the European Union, Italy applies the Community regulations which are valid throughout the Union.
If the EU has quite a liberal foreign trade policy, there are a certain number of restrictions, especially at the level of agricultural products, ensuing from the implementation of the CAP (Common Agricultural Policy): applying compensations when importing and exporting agricultural products to favor the development of agriculture within the EU implies a certain number of systems to control and regulate goods entering EU territory.
Moreover, for sanitary reasons, as regards the presence of Genetically Modified Organisms, if they are allowed in Europe, their presence must, for example, be systematically specified on packaging. Importing beef fed on hormones is also prohibited.
The principle of precaution is now more widely favored: in case of doubt, import is prohibited until the non- noxiousness of the goods is proved.
Customs duties and taxes on imports
Italy uses the harmonized system.
While the principle of free movement of goods forms the internal part of the Customs Union, the CCT forms the external part as it enables uniform Customs duties to be applied to products from third party countries, whichever Member State is the country of destination. Duties for countries outside Europe are not very high, especially for industrial products (4.2% on average for the general tariff).
Import procedures are subject to a declaration on-line or on paper. You will find further information on the Agenzia delle Dogane (Customs Agency) website.
The inscription "no a la vente" (not for sale) is compulsory on commercial samples.
Source: FITA http://fita.org/countries/italy.html
Italy trade, Export and Import.
This site provides a country
analysis from an energy perspective.
A comprehensive list of freight
forwarders provided by Freight Net. Choose "Italy" from the drop-down list.
A comprehensive list of local
Chambers of Commerce.provided by the World Chambers Network.
This link will take you to a search page. Enter the country
name to get a listing of Chambers in that country
Focus telephone directories
Export focus provides links to
local telephone directories for the country.
Find free market surveys on the web.
Doing business in Italy
This page shows summary Doing Business 2009 data for the selected economy. The first table lists the overall "Ease of Doing Business" rank (out of 181 economies) and the rankings by each topic. The rest of the tables summarize the key indicators for each topic and benchmark against regional and high-income economy (OECD) averages.
Italy Risk analysis
Ducroire/Delcredere country risk analysis.
and business associations in Italy
Provided by ExportFocus.com.
Fairs in Italy
Calendar of Fairs being held in Italy .
Italy Business Forecast Report
This may be purchased from Business Monitor and provides essential macroeconomic, political and financial analysis for companies doing business in Italy .
Provided by FITA, this gives a detailed break-down of business in Italy.
The Made in Italy Official Portal.
for Foreign Trade
Gives information on doing business
in Italy, trade fairs and exhibitions and world markets.
Italian Standardization Organization
UNI - Italian Organization for Standardization - is a private association founded in 1921 appointed by the italian government and the European Union to develop, approve and publish technical standards in all economic sectors (industry, trade and services) except for the electric and electrotechnical ones.
SINCERT Accreditation Organization
SINCERT, National System for the Accreditation of Certification and Inspection Bodies, was founded in 1991 as a Non Profit Organization, legally recognized by the Italian Government with Ministerial Decree passed on the 16th of June 1995. Currently SINCERT is comprised of 47 members, including the principle Institutes (socio-economic, scientific and technical) directly or indirectly involved in accreditation and certification i.e. Public Administration, major Research and Technical Institutes, Consumer Associations, Associations in the industry, commerce and agricultural categories, Chambers of Commerce, public transport and energy Suppliers, representative Associations of the Certification and Inspection Bodies, Professional consultancy companies and many other accreditation related organizations.
The European Union, of which this country is part, is a single market, without any customs barriers, which ensures free circulation of goods. Accordingly, rates, custom duties and other regulations that apply to the European Union, also apply to this country. Information on important rates and regulations is given below:
Global Export/Import directory
Italy section of this website.
WorldBidItaly is an international, business-to-business marketplace that facilitates international trade by providing qualified import/export trade leads and catalog posting. Paid registered membership provides access to a global network of affiliated sites that work together to enhance imports and exports across borders as well as national trade within borders.