The Italian financial maneuver for 2019 provides incentives for foreigners who choose to move to the southern regions.

Why should a foreign pensioner decide to move to a small town in southern Italy, perhaps with less than twenty thousand inhabitants, and perhaps with an unknown name? From the fantastic climate, dreamlike landscape, delicious cuisine, and the sincerity and warmth of its people, Southern Italy is the ideal place to spend the retirement years of well-deserved rest. Now, these details are not the only incentives for foreign retirees, as a new tax incentive is being introduced by the Italian government.

What the new Incentive provides


  • What the new Incentive provides
  • Article 24-ter
  • The Eight Southern Regions
  • Duration of the Initiative

The 2019 Budget Law (L. n. 145/2018) has dedicated a special chapter (art. 1, co. 273 – 275) to those who benefit from a pension treatment abroad (comparable pensions or checks). These retirees, if they wish, will have access to a facilitated regime that allows them to subject their income to a substitute tax of 7%. A flat-rate tax that, is equal for all, regardless of the economic conditions of the applicant.

This incentive relies on one condition, that they agree to move to a municipality that does not have a population more than twenty thousand inhabitants, one that is located in the Southern Italian region, or the "Mezzogiorno" region. Literally meaning "Noon" or "Midday", the Mezzogiorno is defined as the area which previously belonged to the Kingdom of Two Sicilies (Abruzzo, Apulia, Basilicata, Calabria, Molise, Sicily, and occasionally Sardinia).

Article 24-ter

The TUIR, or the Consolidated Income Tax Law, is enriched by Article 24-ter which, in addition to tax incentives, guarantees those who make the decision to transfer to a small, Southern Italian

town is entitled to a series of tax breaks and reductions; First of which are being relieved of tax reporting obligations and exemption from the Ivie payment (the tax on real estate investments abroad) and VAT tax (the tax on value of the assets abroad which, normally, are borne by residents in Italy) in possession of current accounts, financial products, and savings abroad.

The Eight Southern Regions

The regions indicated by the Government, namely Sicily, include Calabria, Sardinia, Campania,

Basilicata, Abruzzo, Puglia and Molise. The choice is expansive, including places of historical interest, the seaside, mountains, plains, countryside...

Duration of the Initiative

Currently, the tax periods affected by the new provision are five, during which the pensioner will also be exempted from the presentation of the RW framework of the Unico model, which declares to the Italian tax authorities any foreign financial assets and equity investments held by regular Italian residents. In addition, for five years the payment of property taxes abroad (Ivie) and of the value tax on financial products, current accounts and savings held abroad (Ivafe).

The substitute tax must be paid in a single solution within the deadline set for the payment of the balance of income taxes.

The tax return for the tax period in which the residence is transferred to Italy is renewable, for five years, starting from the date of transfer of residence.

It is also possible to revoke the tax return obtained in the previous tax periods.

The pensioner who wishes to move to transfer to Southern Italy but does not wish to take part in the tax provisions can opt out by indicating so at the time of the transfer of residence.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.