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New Italian Finance Law to Facilitate Company Financings

On August 20, 2014, the Decreto Competitività (as converted into Law with amendments, the "Decree"), was published in the Italian Official Gazette (Gazzetta Ufficiale della Repubblica Italiana). The Decree is part of a broader reform package aimed at supporting the competitiveness of Italian entities. White & Case was part of the working group providing advice on the Decree.

The following is a summary of the key changes introduced by the Decree.

Italian companies may now borrow from non-bank entities, and tax advantages apply to Qualifying Financings. Italian insurance and securitization companies may now lend directly to Italian entities; withholding tax exemption extended to Qualifying Financings granted to entities by banks, unleveraged UCITS and insurance companies located in European white list jurisdictions; and "substitute tax" regime extended to transfers of receivables or contracts and related security interests in the secondary market.

Changes in the tax regime applicable to the issuance of bonds which are privately placed and not listed. Withholding tax exemption extended to interest and other payments on unlisted bonds held exclusively by Qualified Investors; and withholding tax exemption extended to interest and other payments on bonds effected in favour of securitization companies and European collective investment undertakings.

Multiple voting rights shares. Introduction of multiple voting right shares.

The new provisions partially amend previous reforms contained in the Decreto Sviluppo and the Decreto Destinazione Italia.

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