June / July 1999

Italy: Draft decree on postal market liberalisation falls short of the mark

01 June 1999

The first stage of the liberalisation of Italy’s postal services is running into difficulties, with both the Italian Competition Authority and the European Commission questioning the compatibility of the draft implementing decree with the European Postal Services Directive. In addition, private operators are concerned by the extent of the services reserved to the state monopoly, which leaves them with limited scope to compete. The Italian Government is coming under growing pressure to modify the terms of the draft decree as it undergoes review before Parliament. The contention surrounding postal services liberalisation illustrates the difficulties of opening up to competition services which have historically been the exclusive preserve of the state.