Italian Cryptocurrency Regulation Landscape Prior to 2024

The Italian legislative landscape for cryptocurrencies experienced significant updates in the years leading up to 2024. These changes marked a notable shift in Italy’s approach to digital assets, aligning with global trends in cryptocurrency regulation.

Key Regulatory Developments

Introduction of Capital Gains Tax on Cryptocurrency: A pivotal change in 2023 was the introduction of a 26% capital gains tax on cryptocurrency gains. This tax applied to profits exceeding €2,000, treating such gains as “miscellaneous income” for tax purposes. This reform was part of Italy’s 2023 budget and was a major step towards integrating cryptocurrency into the nation’s formal tax regime​​​​​​.

Redefinition of Cryptocurrencies as Crypto-assets: The Budget Law 2023 (No. 197/2022) played a crucial role in redefining cryptocurrencies in Italy. Overcoming the Italian Revenue Agency’s previous approach of equating cryptocurrencies with foreign currencies, this law placed cryptocurrencies in a new category termed “crypto-assets”. This definition recognized them as digital representations of value or rights that can be transferred or stored electronically, primarily using distributed ledger technology. This reclassification was a significant move, acknowledging the unique nature and technological framework of cryptocurrencies​​.

Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Measures for Crypto Firms: In February 2023, Italy implemented new anti-money laundering rules specifically targeting crypto firms. These regulations mandated that providers of cryptocurrency exchange services, crypto trading, digital wallet services, and other related virtual currency services must enroll in a special section to conduct business in Italy. As part of compliance, these entities were required to implement specific policies and procedures, aligning with the new legal framework. This development represented Italy’s commitment to tackling financial crimes in the digital asset space​​​​.


Prior to 2024, Italy’s legislative environment for cryptocurrencies evolved significantly, with the government taking steps to integrate these digital assets into the formal financial and legal system. The introduction of capital gains tax, redefinition of cryptocurrencies as crypto-assets, and the establishment of stringent AML measures for crypto firms were the key elements of this transformation. These changes not only demonstrated Italy’s recognition of the growing importance and complexity of digital assets but also its intent to establish a regulated and secure environment for their use and trade. This evolution in Italy’s cryptocurrency regulations was in line with global trends, reflecting a broader shift towards acknowledging and integrating digital currencies into national economic frameworks.

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