Registered Italian farmers will not have to pay Social Security contributions for the year.
In an official note, INPS (the Italian Social Security National Institute) said the exemption from the mandatory assurance contribution is part of a broader effort by the Government to promote entrepreneurship within the agricultural sector.
The benefit is extended to both new agricultural entrepreneurs and new self-employed direct growers.
Newly registered and young farmers under 40 years of age may also ask to be exempted from payments in 2021 as well.
“The incentive,” states the note, “provides for exemption from the payment of 100 percent of the contribution of the compulsory general insurance for invalidity, old age and survivors (IVS), for a maximum period of 24 months.”
Given the nature of farming, which often involves the whole households, the self-employed growers can ask that the benefit be extended to family members helping on the field.
While directed to all the young farmers registering in 2020, the benefit will not be automatically applied. The specific request must be sent electronically to INPS who will verify the position of applicants and approve them case-by-case.
The fiscal incentive is one of a series of measures that several Italian farm associations have been asking to better face the COVID-19 aftermath. It also adds up to the new funds for agriculture signed by the ministries of Agriculture of the European Union.
Within the framework of E.U. actions to sustain the agricultural sector, Italian farmers will receive contributions up to €7.000 ($7.900) in a series of incentives worth €400 million ($453 million) that will be assigned until June 2021.
The new funds decided by the ministries will have to be confirmed by the European Parliament where modifications could lead to a delay.
To sustain the activities of women agricultural entrepreneurs, the Italian Agricultural Federation (CIA) and several associations have asked the Italian Ministry of Agriculture to unlock the new fund “Women on the Field” worth €15 million ($16.98 million) that was announced last November, before the economic shock caused by the COVID-19 emergency.