Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.
Factsheet for measure IT-2007-14/2736 – measures in Italy
|Country||Italy , applies nationwide|
|Time period||Open ended, started on 04 April 2007|
|Context||Restructuring Support Instruments|
|Type||Legislations or other statutory regulations|
Ensuring business continuity and support for essential services
– Smoothing frictions or reallocation of workers
|Author||Lisa Dorigatti (University of Milan) and Eurofound|
|Measure added||11 July 2022 (updated 07 November 2022)|
Through Act No. 3-03638, published on 4 April 2017, in session No. 800, the Unit for the Management of Disputes of Enterprises in Crisis (UGV), an operational branch of the enterprise crisis structure, is established at the Ministry of Economic Development. The task of the UGV is to safeguard and consolidate the employment levels of enterprises and it must also perform a preventive function, aimed at preventing the worsening of crisis situations.
Unit for the management of disputes concerning enterprises facing (Unità per la Gestione delle Vertenze delle Imprese in Crisi, UGV) is the operational branch of the Business Crisis Unit ('Struttura per le crisi d’Impresa', SCI) of the Ministry of Economic Development. Established in 2008, SCI develops tools for fighting the decline of the Italian production system, both related to individual companies and to specific areas or productive sectors. Its actions are targeted at identifying and implementing industrial policy measures, as well as at the reindustrialisation and conversion of areas and productive sectors experiencing difficulties, and to deal with companies facing economic difficulties (risk of closure and/or dismissal of a significant number of workers).
UGV, which is staffed with crisis management experts from the Ministry of Economic Development and the Ministry of Labour and Social Policies, promotes meetings (the so called 'tavoli di crisi') with enterprises experiencing difficulties for developing measures to prevent and face business crises and safeguard employment. Beyond concerned companies, these meetings involve all the actors concerned, such as social partners and institutions (also at the local level).
Regarding its effectiveness, since its establishment in 2008, UGV activated more than 1,000 crisis units and managed more than 3,000 meetings between companies, trade unions and local institutions. In 2019, UGV dealt with 149 situations of business crisis involving 180,000 workers. The concerned companies belong to different sectors, with steel, appliances and ICT as the most involved.
The most important example are: Bridgestone, Whirlpool, Arcelor Mittal, Micron, SM Optics, SGL, Saeco (Philips group), Pilkington, Italtel, Alitalia. In 2017, 42 crisis talks were concluded. Among them, 27 (64%) ended up positively, with the development of a restructuring plan and new investments, or the acquisition of the company by a new investor. 9 (21%) ended with a conservative solution, while 6 (14%) with a business closure.
The main weakness of the measure is that crisis management is relatively long: on average, each case takes more than two years (28-30 months), with some cases taking more than 60 months (see for instance Alcoa, Lucchini, Termini Imerese, OM Carrelli, Gepin, Ideal Standard). Of the 149 crisis tables managed in 2019, 102 (that is 68.5%) have been active for more than three years and 28 have been open for more than 7 years. UGV’s actions are mostly targeted to large companies, which represent more than one third of the companies involved in negotiations.
|Does not apply to workers||Does not apply to citizens|
Local / regional government
Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:
|Trade unions||Employers' organisations|
|Form||Not applicable||Not applicable|
Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:
Eurofound (2022), Unit for the management of disputes concerning enterprises facing difficulties , measure IT-2007-14/2736 (measures in Italy), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/IT-2007-14_2736.html
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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.