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December 20, 2021

Italy | Update on VAT electronic invoicing requirements

Postponement of the termination of forms for cross-border transactions (Esterometro)

Italy’s Decree Law No. 146/2021 Conversion Law postpones from 1 January  to 1 July 2022 the entry into force of the amendments to the communication process for transactions with non-Italian businesses, referred to as “Esterometro,” which provides that in place of filing the requisite form, the transmission of data relating to cross-border transactions via the Interchange System (SdI) with the format of an electronic invoice is sufficient.

It is important to note that the aforementioned Conversion Law has not yet entered into force (as it is in the course of publication in the Italian Official Gazette) but the respective amendment was formally approved on 14 December  2021.

On this basis, the communication of transactions with non-Italian businesses carried out between 1 January 2022 and 30 June 2022 will still take place according to the current methods (i.e. by transmitting the data, on a cumulative basis, quarterly by the last day of the month following each quarter).

Extension of the requirement for electronic invoicing and extension to subjects participating in the flat-rate scheme

The Council of the European Union (EU) approved the adoption of the proposal of the European Commission – previously discussed by the Permanent Representatives Committee (COREPER) – on the extension for the three-year period 2022/2024 of the measure derogating from Articles 218 and 232 of Directive 2006/112/CE, authorizing Italy to adopt the mandatory electronic invoicing system (see EU Council Decision 2021/2251 of 13 December 2021 published in the European Official Gazette, n. L 454 of 17 December 2021).

As part of this Decision, a provision was made for the extension of the obligation of electronic invoicing to taxable persons who make use of the exemption for small businesses referred to in art. 282 of Directive 2006/112/EC (in Italy represented by minimum and flat-rates taxpayers – regime dei minimi e forfetario).

The extension to 31 December 2024 of this obligation does not result in any real change in the “ordinary” system of electronic invoicing of business to business and business to consumer operations until the extension of the measure to minimum and flat-rate schemes is implemented in the Italian VAT law.

Future Alerts will report on developments regarding this topic.

News on invoices related to frequent exporters

Under Provision of the Director of the Italian Revenue Agency Prot. No. 293390/2021 certain updates of the frequently asked questions (FAQs) relating to electronic invoicing have been published. Among them, it should be noted, in particular, the adaptation of the instructions, contained in the FAQ published on 27 November 2018, n. 14, relating to the compilation of electronic invoices documenting the supplies to frequent exporters. 

The Tax Authorities, implementing the changes made to art. 1 co. 1 letter .c) of Law Decree No. 746/1983 by Art. 12-septies of Legislative Decree No. 34/2019, specified that it is necessary to report, in the XML file to be transmitted to the Interchange System (so-called SDI), “the details of the protocol of receipt of the declaration of intent sent to the Italian tax authority by the frequent exporter.”

In addition, the above-mentioned measure provides that the so-called frequent exporters will be subject to specific procedures of risk analysis and control through the match of the information reported in the letter of intent and the data available in the Tax Authorities’ database.


For additional information with respect to this Alert, please contact the following:

Studio Legale Tributario, Rome

Studio Legale Tributario, Milan

Studio Legale Tributario, Treviso

Studio Legale Tributario, Turin


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