Italy participates in the activities of the European Union along with all the main institutions of the Italian Republic, within their respective competences: the Government, the Parliament, Regions and Autonomous Provinces. The Government as a whole is involved in these activities, from the President of the Council of ministers (Prime Minister) to individual Ministers also through their respective departments.
The Department for European Policies supports Italy’s President of the Council of Ministers or the delegated political authority in managing relations with European institutions.
The Department’s organisation is regulated by the Organisational Decree issued on 25 May 2016 and ensures, inter alia:
- Coordination at the stages of the formation of European legislation and its transposition into Italian law (working tables, European Law, European Delegation Law)
- Coordination on internal market issues, such as free movement of persons, services and goods, freedom of establishment, public procurement, intellectual property, State Aid
- Functioning of the Interministerial Committee for European Affairs (CIAE)
- Information to Parliament, in particular the Annual Report on Italy's participation in the EU
- Prevention of European litigations
- Communication and information on the EU, primarily on access to policies, programmes, opportunities, and rights.
Furthermore, with SOLVIT national centre, the Department assists citizens and businesses that report incorrect application of European law by EU Member States’ public administrations; with the Assistance Centre on Professional Qualifications, the Department informs and assists citizens on the recognition of professional qualifications and/or free provision of services in the EU.
Eventually, as National Coordinator of the Internal Market Information (IMI) System, the Department coordinates and promotes administrative cooperation and mutual assistance between competent authorities in Internal Market matters.
The Department carries out its activities jointly with Italian and European institutions, notably with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (Italy’s MAECI) – Directorate General for the European Union and the Permanent Representation of Italy to the European Union. The latter operates as the “Embassy of Italy to the EU” ensuring that the Country's policies and interests are pursued as effectively as possible at Union level.
In Brussels, the Department ensures the Italian government's participation in the Council of the European Union within the General Affairs and Competitiveness formations and participates with its officials in Council's working groups. Within the Council of the EU, national ministers meet periodically to adopt laws and coordinate Union policies. Within their respective domains, Italian Government’s representatives regularly attend Council meetings.
Furthermore, the Department liaises with the European Commission and the European Parliament also through their Italy-based offices: the Permanent Representation in Italy of the European Commission and the European Parliament Information and Liaison Office.
The Department's role in the context of Italian participation in the European integration process is regulated by Law No. 234 of 24 December 2012.