Italy Provides Tax Relief to Companies Impacted by Earthquakes

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By Eric Lyman

A new measure providing an array of tax benefits for companies operating in parts of Italy damaged by earthquakes in 2016 and 2017 has entered into force.

The incentive package, which was first proposed after a series of deadly earthquakes in central Italy in August 2016, was finalized by the Council of Ministers Feb. 2 and approved by Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni. It became effective Feb. 3.

Since the measure was proposed, the same area was rocked by major aftershocks in October 2016 and again in January. Cumulative damage estimates are still being calculated, but government officials said they could reach as high as tens of billions of euros.

Among the changes the package allows are extensions of deadlines for corporate tax payments, tax deductions for costs associated with interrupted supply changes or distribution issues, increased worker assistance compensation for workers at companies closed because of earthquake-related damages, tax breaks for spending by companies and individuals designed to make structures more resilient to future earthquakes, and access to advisory services.

Additionally, collection services for some kinds of debt payments for companies and individuals in the area will be suspended until Sept. 30, 2017. There are no fixed deadlines for the overall package.

Victims of any future earthquakes in the area may not be given immediate access to the same incentives.

Companies and individuals must request access to the package of services and must be able to show they were impacted by the temblors, although some of the incentives—such as the extended deadline for corporate tax payments—will be made available for all corporations on their operations in the impacted area.

There was no listing of corporations that will be eligible for assistance. But the number is likely large, since it would include companies with direct or some indirect exposure to the areas damaged by the quakes.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eric Lyman in Rome at correspondents@bna.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Penny Sukhraj at psukhraj@bna.com

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