The Bank of Italy, through the activity of granting an authorisation for the exercise of financial activities, carries out supervisory tasks: by allowing access to the market for intermediaries in possession of the requisites envisaged by the law, it pursues the objectives of safeguarding sound and prudent management of intermediaries, overall stability, efficiency and competitiveness of the financial system. In this context, the Bank of Italy submits the authorisation proposals for banks to the ECB, in accordance with the provisions of EU Regulation 1024/2013. Moreover, the Bank of Italy authorises financial market access for non-bank financial intermediaries ex art. 106 TUB (including confidi, Pawnbrokers and trust companies); asset management companies (SGR, SICAF, SICAV); payment institutions (PI); electronic money institutions (EMI).

The Bank of Italy also authorises the admission of microcredit companies to the list provided for by Article 111 of the Italian Banking Law (Testo Unico Bancario), pending the establishment of the Body designated to manage such list and exercise the relative powers of control.

The authorisation of investment firms is granted by CONSOB. For the purpose of issuing the authorisation, CONSOB requests an opinion from the Bank of Italy.

Information relative to each category of intermediary can be found in the Table below.

IntermediaryActivityDurationCompetent Authority
Banks Deposit-taking and Lending 180 days European Central Bank / Bank of Italy
Non-bank financial intermediaries Financing 180 days Bank of Italy
Loan guarantee consortia (Confidi) Financing and Collective credit guarantees 180 days Bank of Italy
Trust companies - Fiduciaries Custody and administration of assets entrusted by trustees on the basis of a fiduciary mandate 180 days Bank of Italy
Pawnbrokers Short-term loans secured with items of personal property as collateral 180 days Bank of Italy
Microcredit operators Loans for small amounts with ancillary services 90 days Bank of Italy
PI Payment services 90 days Bank of Italy
EMI Issuing e-Money 90 days Bank of Italy
SGR, SICAV, SICAF Asset management 90 days Bank of Italy (with opinion by CONSOB)

The regulation applicable to financial intermediaries that are subject to authorisation by the Bank of Italy can be found on the Bank of Italy web site. Supervisory publications and regulations are arranged by sector, year and topic in the Banking and Financial Supervision Section. In addition, an e-mail alert service provides continuously updated news and information.

The authorisation procedure

The authorisation procedure (see infographic), starts after the Bank of Italy has received a complete application containing all the regulatory informational requirements. Where these are not met, the process will not start and the applicant will receive a communication from the Bank of Italy indicating the reasons for the irregularities or incompleteness of the application.


Applications must be transmitted by pec (see Contacts section). However, in accordance with Regolamento della Banca d'Italia del 23.12.2021, banks must use the Portale della vigilanza bancaria or IMAS Portal.

Before formally transmitting an application, firms can contact the Bank of Italy (see Contacts section) and request a meeting to illustrate the main characteristics of their initiative. These meetings are intended to assist the firm and are not required. Interactions in this phase do not count in the procedural time limit.

During the procedure, the Bank of Italy can request additional information or certifications, carry out inspections, or acquire the opinion of domestic or foreign Authorities. Where provided for by Regulation, the procedure can be suspended. The suspension has a maximum duration (180 days) after which the remaining time in the initial terms recommences its count.

The Bank of Italy, where the outcome of procedure is:

  • positive, grants the authorisation requested or, for banks, notifies the ECB of its proposal to grant the banking license. Limitations or recommendations may be included with the authorisation, aimed to foster the necessary initiatives to ensure respect of the prudential rules and the sound and prudent management of the firm;
  • negative, before adopting a negative decision, the Bank of Italy sends the firm a communication indicating the reasons for such decision. The communication suspends the terms of the procedure. The applicant, in the successive 10 days, has the right to present in writing its own observations. The terms of the procedure start again 10 days after receipt of the firm's observations or, in their absence, after transmission of the Bank of Italy's communication. Where the denial is confirmed, the final Provision will include the reasons why the firm's observations, where transmitted, were deemed inadequate or lacking, as well as any additional motivations relating to the observations.

The authorisation procedure will follow and apply the indications established in:

  • memorandum of understanding stipulated with other authorities;
  • the supervisory rules and regulations applicable to each intermediary.

For specific information relating to the authorisation procedures for banks, please see the designated section.


For authorisation to operate in the banking and financial markets under the Bank of Italy's competence, contact the Servizio Rapporti Istituzionali di Vigilanza, Divisione Costituzioni Banche e Altri Intermediari, at the following e-mail addresses:

E-mails can be sent to the above addresses to request meetings or ask for clarifications strictly related to the authorisation process (for example with reference to the timing or the applicable legislation or the information and documents to be transmitted). For queries of a general nature relating to Bank of Italy regulations, please see the dedicated page.

Questions regarding matters already considered on the Bank of Italy website will not be answered.

Applications from non-bank intermediaries must be transmitted to the Bank of Italy by pec. In accordance with the Bank of Italy Regulation of 23.12.2021, banks must use the IMAS Portal.

When the application involves innovative initiatives in the fields of financial and payment services, and where certain requisites are met, it is possible to utilize the following dedicated communication and support channels (so-called Innovation Facilitators): Canale Fintech, Sandbox regolamentare and Milano Hub. Each of these has specific requirements which are outlined in the respective sections.


With these FAQ the Bank of Italy aims to foster transparency with regard to the administrative procedures in place for accessing the Italian banking and financial markets. This section contains FAQ regarding the carrying out of the authorisation procedure. For clarifications on the rules and regulations applicable to particular categories of bank and non-bank financial intermediaries please consult the specific designated sections.