First things first. For those of you who have never set up a business in Italy, you have to know that in this country there are a whole series of requirements that simply do not exist elsewhere.
On top of basic accounting records which are needed to set up a simple limited company, add on five or six accounting and taxation ledgers that must be regularly kept up to date. It can be a tricky and expensive business. Then there is the SPESOMETRO (SPENDOMETER) which keeps track of all the parties you buy from and sell to. This is an extremely useful tool given the high levels of tax evasion. However, it has been implemented with thousands of time extensions and exceptions which make it extremely complicated to manage for those who have little or no experience.
Then add on all the tax return forms to be completed (IRES,IRAP, VAT,770), the Intrastat form (if you are trading with EU countries) , VAT payments, monthly or three monthly social security contributions, and all the other taxes such as Tari, IMU and Tasi, and only then does it start to become clear how difficult it is to manage a company by yourself in Italy. You really do need help from a chartered accountant.
The good news is that there are some regions in our country where it is easier to start up a business! Red tape, accessing credit and taxation are not the same all over the country, and these are important factors that influence the development of new businesses. Puglia, for example, the place where I live and develop business for my customers, is a happy exception.
In the south Puglia is an exception; it has received recognition for its access to credit and availability of preferential financing.
Here are three reasons why it makes sense to invest in Puglia.
1) Puglia is a region that successfully marries technology and tradition, using European funds to obtain the best in development and innovation. Local government in Puglia focuses great attention on companies that wish to invest here. It provides a range of flexible and targeted incentives, favourable financing schemes for industrial investment in order to promote innovative products and processes and to facilitate industrial research and internationalization. Puglia has become the ideal destination for companies that want to invest in projects and smart technologies, using the excellent local training model. The regional system of research and universities is strongly integrated into the business system and aims to promote opportunities for scientific and technological production. It is an integral part of international research centers with which it collaborates on many projects.
2) The lifestyle in this area is another bonus. The Puglia brand is becoming more and more famous all over the world and people are fascinated and captivated by the lifestyle, which explains why this area has become an international holiday destination. What’s more, Puglia is the perfect gateway to the East and thus a tourist magnet. New technologies are essential tools in providing visitors with all the information they need about local attractions, events and accommodation. The regions offers a complete travel-planner which helps visitors get around, be it for business or for leisure.
3) The smart way to get around Puglia
Thanks to the most advanced solutions, you can choose various options for getting around (private vehicles, public transport, etc.) depending on your criteria of choice, (the shortest, fastest or the cheapest route, etc.) and live updates on road conditions are provided(traffic, accidents, road works, etc.) The travel system involves local authorities and operators, ensuring precise traffic monitoring, careful attention to road safety, an immediate response to emergencies, and up-to-the- minute information about Local Public Transport services (schedules, routes, etc.).Their aim is to improve the visitor’s experience of accessing information about local attractions. Puglia also has two international airports, one in Brindisi and one in Bari. Naples or Pescara airport are just a three hour drive away. The region is also well connected with the States (New York and Miami mainly) . There are many tourist ports, as well as important commercial ports around the whole region.
Despite the three reasons I have just set out, you must not invest in Puglia because it is considered to be one of the most beautiful and famous regions in Italy. Neither must you invest here because the new regional budget has set aside substantial European Union funding packages for people looking to invest
No! You must invest in Puglia because both large Italian and foreign companies are placing their bets on the region. They are doing this by investing approximately 400 million euros. This is the sum that a dozen companies have decided to pour into businesses in Puglia through a mechanism of funding programs and agreements signed with the Region, which also ensure economic support to the various projects submitted. The numbers of companies betting on Puglia reveal the level of commitment.
Puglia Development, the “in house” company that deals with regional business incentives has successfully managed to strengthen the funding programs to attract new companies to the region.
Out of the 400 million euros invested with the last 14 funding programs for the period 2014-2020, about €243 million (61 percent of the total) come from foreign companies; i.e Getrag, Ge Avio and Jindal.
Now I will tell you why these big companies have invested in Puglia – and it is the same reason why you should do so too.
Puglia is endowed with considerable factor productivity advantages and businesses with a strong inclination towards exporting their products, all of which is favoured by its strategic position in the Mediterranean.
In short, Puglia is an excellent logistics hub for the areas in the European common market, South East Europe and the Mediterranean basin.
What’s more, the location of new industrial areas is aided by the following factors:
- local governments have reduced red tape, thus making it easier and quicker to start up a business;
- financial help for businesses is among the highest in Italy, and the existence of integrated financial instruments promotes investments;
- the large highly qualified young labour force;
- modernised infrastructure facilities will be enhanced by further development of roads, railway (via the connection with the “Adriatic Corridor” and enhanced access to the Tyrrhenian side of the peninsula), ports, airports (Bari, Cerignola and Brindisi) water supply and water treatment services.
Considerable development of tourism has led to the creation of a regional promotional tourist plan. Maritime, youth and religious tourism are among the most developed in Puglia and wine tourism received the prestigious award of “top wine destination 2013 ” by the international magazine “Wine Enthusiast“.
Population density is higher than the national average; the province of Bari has almost a third of the inhabitants of the region, whereas the remainder reside mostly in medium-sized cities.
Simply put, the business structure in Puglia is made up of 98% small and medium-sized, micro and artisanal businesses. In the last few years we have witnessed important changes both in infrastructure and in economic terms.
Valente Group have partially contributed to this development and have all the skills and experience to help new entrepreneurs who really want to invest in Puglia. Our goal is to identify the easiest and most concrete solutions to help investors avoid all the red tape and institutional obstacles.