SUD-SISMA-ZES bonus: what will change from 7 June. For SEZs, further opportunities in the PNRR2 Decree

In recent weeks,   the Revenue Agency Provision no. 107620/2022 of April 6 which introduced a new communication model for the use of the tax credit for investments in the Southern Regions ( Calabria, Puglia, Campania, Sicily, Basilicata, Sardinia, Abruzzo, Molise), in the Economic Zones Specials (ZES) and in the 140 municipalities affected by the seismic events in Central Italy in the Lazio, Umbria, Marche and Abruzzo regions starting from 24 August 2016.

Access to the schemes in question is, in fact, conditional on a communication to the Revenue Agency , called to authorize its use. The tax credit can be used as compensation from the year in which the investment was made, after 5 days from the authorization to use it, subject to incurring the subsidized cost.

 In particular, with the recent provision , the geographical scope of application of the tax credit for investments in Southern Italy , for the year 2022 , was adapted to the provisions of the new Regional Aid Charter 2022-2027. The Charter was approved by the European Commission with a decision of 2 December 2021; subsequently, with a decision of 18 March 2022, the Charter was integrated to define the areas of the Abruzzo Region eligible for regional investment aid in derogation from Article 107, paragraph 3, letter c) of the TFEU.

More specifically, by virtue of the provisions of the 2022 Budget Law, it will be necessary to refer to the 2014-2020 Regional Aid Charter as regards the incentive intensities and the 2022-2027 Regional Aid Charter as regards the eligible areas .

The new Communication model replaces the previous model starting from 7 June 2022 .

With the new format, for the Mezzogiorno tax credit it will be possible to submit applications for investments initiated and implemented starting from 1 January 2016 and up to 31 December 2022.

For the ZES tax credit , with the new model it will be possible to send applications for investments initiated and implemented starting from the date of entry into force of the DPCM establishing the special economic zone and by 31 December 2022 .

As for the SISMA tax credit , particular attention should be paid to the fact that, starting from 7 June 2022, the Communication model cannot be used, however, with reference to investments made from 7 April 2018 and up to 2020, for the request for use of the benefit, as well as to communicate any adjustments or waivers to the aforementioned tax credit requested with previous versions of the model. The facilitation measure governed by the previous formulation had been authorized until 31 December 2020 by the European Commission with decision C (2018) 1661 final of 6 April 2018.

For the earthquake tax credit, art. 43-ter of Legislative Decree 152/2021 established that, starting from January 1, 2021 and until December 31, 2021, the tax credit is applied in compliance with the Temporary Framework . Therefore, the implementation of the facilitation measure for 2021 is subject to the adoption by the European Commission of the compatibility decision on the basis of the Temporary Framework. At present, it is expected that the new model cannot yet be used for 2021; following the compatibility decision, the instructions will be subsequently updated.

As for the subsidy intensity, for investments up to 28/2/2017 , for all Regions, the subsidy of the Mezzogiorno tax credit is up to 10% for large companies; 15% for medium-sized enterprises; of 20% for small enterprises and cannot be combined with de minimis aid and other state aid which have as their object the same costs admitted to the benefit. These rates apply to cost ceilings per investment project of 1.5 million for small businesses; 5 million Euros for medium-sized enterprises; 15 million Euros for large companies.

For new capital goods acquired from 1/3/2017 , the following rates are applied for the purposes of the Mezzogiorno and ZES tax credit :

In the context of the instructions to the new communication model, it is stated that these measures constitute the maximum aid intensity . Since the Mezzogiorno tax credit from 1 March 2017 and the ZES tax credit can be combined with other state aid and "de minimis" aid, according to the aforementioned instructions, the tax credit is determined by applying the aforementioned percentages to cost of capital goods and decreasing the relative result by the amount of aid granted or requested .

In the opinion of the writer, in the light of the approval of the new Charter of State aid for regional purposes which provides for higher limits, the possibility of cumulation within the limits of the 2022-2027 Charter would certainly have been desirable, without having to clean up the basis calculation of the tax credit of the amount of aid granted or requested.

For investments made up to 31 December 2020 in the municipalities affected by the earthquake starting from 24 August 2016, the tax credit is up to 25% for large companies, 35% for medium-sized companies and 45% for small businesses.

The subsidy rates are applied to the maximum cost per investment project for the Mezzogiorno tax credit and for the SISMA tax credit of 3 million euros for small businesses; 10 million euros for medium-sized companies and 15 million euros for large companies.

For the ZES tax credit , the maximum limit for each investment project, regardless of the size of the company, is 50 million euros for investments made by 31 May 2021 and 100 million euros for investments made. from 1 June 2021.


Traditionally, the facilitation of Credito Mezzogiorno - SISMA - ZES concerns new instrumental machinery, equipment, plants (items B.II.2 and B.II.3 of the balance sheet assets) as part of an initial investment project . Only for the ZES tax credit are also eligible for instrumental properties , starting from 1 June 2021 . In this context, the decree-law introducing further urgent measures for the implementation of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan of 30 April 2022, n. 36. In particular, in article 37 of the Decree “ Provisions relating to the SEZand ZLS ", it is reported among other things that" The tax credit is extended to the purchase of land and to the acquisition , construction or expansion of properties used for investments ".

Furthermore, it is expected that in order to strengthen the production structure of the SEZs through the different facilitating instrument of the " Development Contracts ", a total sum of 250 million euros is allocated, from the Development and Cohesion Fund (FSC) programming 2021. - 2027, with specific destination for the additional financing of entrepreneurial initiatives in the SEZs.