Italy is preparing to do battle with Europe about ports and taxes. In the first days of January a letter signed by the European competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager was sent to the Italian transport minister, Danilo Toninelli, in which Brussels has told Rome to put an end to the tax exemptions, which it claims is illegal state aid.
In Italy all the port authorities are not subject to the general corporation tax regime and they therefore pay less tax than other companies carrying out given trading activities according to the European Commission’s vision.
Some sources told Splash that now the Italian transport ministry and/or some Italian ports will take legal action in the European Court of Justice to challenge the interpretation of the European executive.
The same case interests also Spanish ports and in the recent past both France and Belgium have received the same treatment from Brussels.
The Belgian ports took legal action in the European Court of Justice to challenge the interpretation coming from Brussels but the decision for these proceedings has not been issued yet.