Could the Bank of Italy publish a list of the commercial banks' 'largest borrowers'or force the banks themselves to do so?

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The publication of information on borrowers is subject to regulatory restrictions. The Data Protection Authority has issued advice to the effect that the safeguards embodied in the laws on data protection, which relate to bank customers who are physical persons, do not apply to corporate borrowers. However, if the banks were to publish information on borrowers without consent, they would be in breach of confidentiality regulations (‘banking confidentiality’), which are legally binding on the banks in Italy, as in the rest of Europe. It is up to Parliament to decide whether and how to introduce waivers to this obligation. The interests of all the major parties concerned need to be carefully balanced as insolvent businesses may as easily be dishonest as just unlucky, having run into the typical difficulties facing any enterprise.

The Bank of Italy acquires information on bank borrowers when they are reported to the Central Credit Register. However, this information cannot be divulged because the Bank has a duty of confidentiality under the Consolidated Banking Law, which implements specific provisions of European legislation. Moreover, the Bank of Italy cannot require or allow supervised banks to make exceptions to confidentiality regulations.