SEZ - Special Economic Zone


SEZ - Special Economic Zone

Decree Law No. 91 of 20 June 2017, converted by Law No. 123 of 3 August 2017, provided for the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs), aimed at fostering the development of established or newly established enterprises within them by creating, for this purpose, favourable economic, financial and administrative conditions through tax benefits and simplifications. A SEZ is defined as a geographically delimited and clearly identified area, located within the borders of the State, also consisting of non-territorially adjacent areas provided that they have an economic functional link, and including at least one port area with the characteristics set out in Regulation (EU) No 1315 of 11 December 2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council on Union guidelines for the development of the trans-European transport network (TEN-T)

In this context, the Puglia and Basilicata Regions have decided to work together to create an interregional SEZ with the Port of Taranto at its centre, the Ionian port area acting as a connector between the different areas and Administrations involved. By Resolution of the Basilicata Regional Council no. 198 of 15 March 2019 and by Resolution of the Puglia Regional Council no. 612 of 29 March 2019, the Strategic Development Plan of the Ionian Interregional SEZ was approved. The approval of the Plan by the Regional Authorities and the identification of the Puglia and Basilicata areas involved have allowed the final establishment, by Decree of the President of the Council of Ministers of 6 June 2019, of the Ionian Interregional Special Economic Zone (SEZ).

The body responsible for managing the SEZ areas is the Steering Committee, composed of an Extraordinary Commissioner of the Government, who chairs it, the President of the Port System Authority, a representative of the Regions in the case of interregional SEZs, a representative of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers and a representative of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport.

The other governance bodies of the Ionian Interregional SEZ, identified by the Strategic Plan, are the Puglia-Basilicata Interregional Steering Committee, chaired by the Secretary of the Port System Authority of the Ionian Sea, which will support the Steering Committee in planning investment promotion and location activities, the One-Stop Administrative Service (SUA), which will act as the Project Manager, using the SEZ Office to support the PM in managing applications, and the Regional Project Facilities, which will be in charge of coordinating the procedure on a territorial basis.

The Steering Committee of the Ionian Interregional SEZ was constituted, pursuant to art. 4 of Decree-Law No. 91 of 20 June 2017, converted, with amendments, by Law No. 123 of 3 August 2017, and met for the first time in November 2019, deliberating on the approval of its Rules of Operation.

The SEZ has made every useful effort to implement the SEZ in practice by means of:

  1. planning the streamlining/netting of the SEZ areas located in Basilicata and Puglia;
  2. defining a locational package (regional facilities and simplifications);
  3. establishing the bodies and offices foreseen in the Ionian Interregional SEZ Strategic Development Plan;
  4. drafting the Rules of Operation of the SEZ;
  5. the establishment of the enclosed Customs Free Zone in accordance with Regulation (EU) no. 952/2013.
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