Italians have the primacy of expat

Who are the Expats? They are our compatriots who decide to leave the country to live and work permanently abroad.

Every year the Migrantes Foundation produces a report and an accurate analysis on Expats in the world: according to the latest 2020 edition, there were 5,486,081 members registered in the Registry of Italians Residing Abroad (AIRE) at the date January 1.

An important mobility phenomenon that seems to affect mainly young people and young adults: 22.3% are between 18 and 34 years old and 23.3% are between 35 and 49 years old.

Starting, it’s not just the “brains”: compared to 2006, the percentage of expatriates abroad with a diploma in their pocket has increased by 292.5%, compared to a (albeit very high) + 193.3% for those who moved abroad with a high degree, degree or doctorate.

The socio-economic impact

The emigration of young people represents a massive loss for our country.

To expatriate, in fact, it is human capital that has educated itself in Italy, with the consequent loss of the resources invested for its training and specialization. Confindustria estimates that a family spends around 165,000 euros to raise and educate a child up to 25 years old, while the state spends 100,000 euros in schools and universities. All investments benefiting countries with greater attractiveness.

With the phenomenon of emigration, therefore, precious resources that could make our country grow are lost.

Expat comes home

Observing the phenomenon of Expats we can, however, glimpse a unique opportunity: our country has a large number of young talents who speak languages, who have gained work experience in international contexts. they have ambition, plans, enthusiasm.

According to surveys by the PWC study center, 74% of Expats would consider a return to Italy with the same working conditions.

The same Migrantes study concludes: “the question about returning always finds the same answer:“ yes, but ”. The return is narrated as hope, as a myth that makes the distance from loved ones and places of belonging less difficult. Hoping for a return is a way to bring everything back into balance… ”.

This is why the Government and the institutions have moved and continue to move to encourage the return of Expats to Italy through bonuses and tax relief.

Let’s find out together the opportunities offered by the legislation currently in force for returning to Italy, thanks to the support of Angelo D’Ugo, chartered accountant and partner of the GDC Corporate & Tax firm of Milan.

How many expats are there? - The Expat Survey.com I World's largest global research programme into expatriates

The immigrant bonus: all the advantages

Bringing expats back to Italy: this is the objective of the legislative intervention, first introduced with Law no. 238/2010, then reformulated in 2015 with a significant reduction in its benefits, up to the interesting and multiple changes made by the D.L. n. 34/2019, also known as the Impatriate Bonus.

Today the tax regime provided for “repatriated” workers has, in fact, been strengthened and expanded, with the following major changes:

  • The tax base referring to the income produced in Italy is reduced by 70% and even 90% for those who move their residence to the southern regions and islands;
  • The duration of the benefit is confirmed in 5 years, but increases to 10 years for those who have at least one dependent minor child or for those who buy a house in Italy – in this case, the reduction of the tax base is 50% in general of cases and rises to 90% for workers with at least 3 minor or dependent children or in the case of transfer to Southern regions;
  • No reference to educational qualifications, managerial duties or high specialization or qualification requirements;
  • The benefit is also reserved for those who start self-employment or business in Italy;
  • The minimum period of residence abroad (before returning to Italy) drops from 5 to 2 years;
  • For employees, there is no need for the activity to be carried out at a company resident in Italy;
  • Registration with AIRE as proof of residence abroad is no longer mandatory.

We must not forget the interventions aimed at encouraging the return of researchers and teachers provided for in Article 44 of the Legislative Decree n. 78/2010, also strengthened and extended with the latest version of the incentives.

The role of companies in the return of talents to Italy

There is an important fact to reflect on: according to a survey conducted in 2018 by the Controesodo Group, only 21% of Italians abroad are updated on the current legislation in terms of tax relief for those returning to Italy, and about 40% know only vaguely.

According to Rob Brouwer, CEO of Jobrapido, “These are numbers that make you think and make clear the need for institutions to communicate clearly and more incisively, to raise awareness among young people about their rights and opportunities.

Even companies, in fact, can play a strategic role in bringing resources closer to the country, becoming means of information and communication in the recruiting phase.

The selection process itself can be the tool by which expats are made aware of the tax advantages they could enjoy by returning to Italy, and this would in fact become a lever in the hands of Italian companies to attract the best candidates.

Enabled by new technologies, essential to refine the recruiting process and make it more effective in terms of time, costs and results, these incentives can represent a further and decisive lever for companies looking for new talents, as well as a ‘opportunities for many categories of workers who wish to return to Italy but who have not had the opportunity until now. ”

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