Our rules guarantee foreigners an exemption equal to 50% on the tax base
Italy is one of the European countries that most encourages the arrival from abroad of great professional footballers attracted by a tax regime that guarantees them an exemption equal to 50% on the tax base.. This is what emerges from the study entitled ‘Taxing professional football in the EU’ published by the European Parliament and requested by the Eurochamber’s Tax Affairs Committee.
The tax exemption regimes applied by some EU countries “allow players (and indirectly clubs) to enjoy a part of their tax-free salary” and therefore “to optimize the tax base of the players’ income”, write the authors of the study. “It is fair to say that the Italian tax regime is one of the most attractive for top foreign players”, Professor Robby Houben of the University of Antwerp, one of the authors of the study on tax regimes in the seven EU countries that host the main football competitions: Italy, Spain, France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and Portugal.
The most significant reforms are the regime for non-domiciled residents (essentially the € 100,000 flat tax for non-work income, which Cristiano Ronaldo and Romelu Lukaku benefited from, among others) and the incentives to transfer residence to Italy (the system built by the dignity decree and often ended up under accusation because it would favor foreign players). The combination of these forecasts, to use the words of the study “are considered to have a decisive influence on the fiscal attractiveness of Italy for footballers and for sportsmen in general”.