Main Content

Europe :: Italy Print
Page last updated on November 24, 2020
  • Introduction :: Italy
  • Background field listing

    Italy became a nation-state in 1861 when the regional states of the peninsula, along with Sardinia and Sicily, were united under King Victor EMMANUEL II. An era of parliamentary government came to a close in the early 1920s when Benito MUSSOLINI established a Fascist dictatorship. His alliance with Nazi Germany led to Italy's defeat in World War II. A democratic republic replaced the monarchy in 1946 and economic revival followed. Italy is a charter member of NATO and the European Economic Community (EEC) and its subsequent successors the EC and the EU. It has been at the forefront of European economic and political unification, joining the Economic and Monetary Union in 1999. Persistent problems include sluggish economic growth, high youth and female unemployment, organized crime, corruption, and economic disparities between southern Italy and the more prosperous north.

  • Geography :: Italy
  • Location field listing
    Southern Europe, a peninsula extending into the central Mediterranean Sea, northeast of Tunisia
    Geographic coordinates field listing
    42 50 N, 12 50 E
    Map references field listing
    Area field listing
    total: 301,340 sq km
    land: 294,140 sq km
    water: 7,200 sq km

    note: includes Sardinia and Sicily

    country comparison to the world: 73
    Area - comparative field listing
    almost twice the size of Georgia; slightly larger than Arizona
    Area comparison map: Area comparison map
    Land boundaries field listing
    total: 1,836.4 km
    border countries (6): Austria 404 km, France 476 km, Holy See (Vatican City) 3.4 km, San Marino 37 km, Slovenia 218 km, Switzerland 698 km
    Coastline field listing
    7,600 km
    Maritime claims field listing
    territorial sea: 12 nm
    continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
    Climate field listing
    predominantly Mediterranean; alpine in far north; hot, dry in south
    Terrain field listing
    mostly rugged and mountainous; some plains, coastal lowlands
    Elevation field listing
    mean elevation: 538 m
    lowest point: Mediterranean Sea 0 m
    highest point: Mont Blanc (Monte Bianco) de Courmayeur (a secondary peak of Mont Blanc) 4,748 m
    Natural resources field listing
    coal, antimony, mercury, zinc, potash, marble, barite, asbestos, pumice, fluorspar, feldspar, pyrite (sulfur), natural gas and crude oil reserves, fish, arable land
    Land use field listing
    agricultural land: 47.1% (2011 est.)
    arable land: 22.8% (2011 est.) / permanent crops: 8.6% (2011 est.) / permanent pasture: 15.7% (2011 est.)
    forest: 31.4% (2011 est.)
    other: 21.5% (2011 est.)
    Irrigated land field listing
    39,500 sq km (2012)
    Population distribution field listing
    despite a distinctive pattern with an industrial north and an agrarian south, a fairly even population distribution exists throughout most of the country, with coastal areas, the Po River Valley, and urban centers (particularly Milan, Rome, and Naples), attracting larger and denser populations
    Natural hazards field listing

    regional risks include landslides, mudflows, avalanches, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, flooding; land subsidence in Venice

    volcanism: significant volcanic activity; Etna (3,330 m), which is in eruption as of 2010, is Europe's most active volcano; flank eruptions pose a threat to nearby Sicilian villages; Etna, along with the famous Vesuvius, which remains a threat to the millions of nearby residents in the Bay of Naples area, have both been deemed Decade Volcanoes by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior, worthy of study due to their explosive history and close proximity to human populations; Stromboli, on its namesake island, has also been continuously active with moderate volcanic activity; other historically active volcanoes include Campi Flegrei, Ischia, Larderello, Pantelleria, Vulcano, and Vulsini

    Environment - current issues field listing
    air pollution from industrial emissions such as sulfur dioxide; coastal and inland rivers polluted from industrial and agricultural effluents; acid rain damaging lakes; inadequate industrial waste treatment and disposal facilities
    Environment - international agreements field listing
    party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
    signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
    Geography - note field listing
    strategic location dominating central Mediterranean as well as southern sea and air approaches to Western Europe
  • People and Society :: Italy
  • Population field listing
    62,402,659 (July 2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 23
    Nationality field listing
    noun: Italian(s)
    adjective: Italian
    Ethnic groups field listing
    Italian (includes small clusters of German-, French-, and Slovene-Italians in the north and Albanian-Italians and Greek-Italians in the south)
    Languages field listing
    Italian (official), German (parts of Trentino-Alto Adige region are predominantly German speaking), French (small French-speaking minority in Valle d'Aosta region), Slovene (Slovene-speaking minority in the Trieste-Gorizia area)
    Religions field listing
    Christian 83.3% (overwhelmingly Roman Catholic with very small groups of Jehovah's Witnesses and Protestants), Muslim 3.7%, unaffiliated 12.4%, other 0.6% (2010 est.)
    Age structure field listing
    0-14 years: 13.45% (male 4,292,431/female 4,097,732)
    15-24 years: 9.61% (male 3,005,402/female 2,989,764)
    25-54 years: 40.86% (male 12,577,764/female 12,921,614)
    55-64 years: 14% (male 4,243,735/female 4,493,581)
    65 years and over: 22.08% (male 5,949,560/female 7,831,076) (2020 est.)
    population pyramid: population pyramid
    Dependency ratios field listing
    total dependency ratio: 57
    youth dependency ratio: 20.4
    elderly dependency ratio: 36.6
    potential support ratio: 2.7 (2020 est.)
    Median age field listing
    total: 46.5 years
    male: 45.4 years
    female: 47.5 years (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 5
    Population growth rate field listing
    0.11% (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 186
    Birth rate field listing
    8.4 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 218
    Death rate field listing
    10.7 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 27
    Net migration rate field listing
    3.2 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 36
    Population distribution field listing
    despite a distinctive pattern with an industrial north and an agrarian south, a fairly even population distribution exists throughout most of the country, with coastal areas, the Po River Valley, and urban centers (particularly Milan, Rome, and Naples), attracting larger and denser populations
    Urbanization field listing
    urban population: 71% of total population (2020)
    rate of urbanization: 0.29% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
    total population growth rate v. urban population growth rate, 2000-2030: PDF
    Major urban areas - population field listing
    4.257 million ROME (capital), 3.140 million Milan, 2.187 million Naples, 1.792 million Turin, 892,000 Bergamo, 851,000 Palermo (2020)
    Sex ratio field listing
    at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
    0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
    15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
    25-54 years: 0.97 male(s)/female
    55-64 years: 0.94 male(s)/female
    65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female
    total population: 0.93 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
    Mother's mean age at first birth field listing
    31.1 years (2017 est.)
    Maternal mortality rate field listing
    2 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 182
    Infant mortality rate field listing
    total: 3.2 deaths/1,000 live births
    male: 3.4 deaths/1,000 live births
    female: 3 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 212
    Life expectancy at birth field listing
    total population: 82.5 years
    male: 79.8 years
    female: 85.3 years (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 17
    Total fertility rate field listing
    1.47 children born/woman (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 210
    Contraceptive prevalence rate field listing
    65.1% (2013)

    note: percent of women aged 18-49

    Drinking water source field listing
    improved: urban: 100% of population
    rural: 100% of population
    total: 100% of population
    unimproved: urban: 0% of population
    rural: 0% of population
    total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
    Current Health Expenditure field listing
    8.8% (2017)
    Physicians density field listing
    3.98 physicians/1,000 population (2017)
    Hospital bed density field listing
    3.2 beds/1,000 population (2017)
    Sanitation facility access field listing
    improved: urban: 98.8% of population
    rural: 98.6% of population
    total: 98.8% of population
    unimproved: urban: 1.2% of population
    rural: 1.4% of population
    total: 1.2% of population (2017 est.)
    HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate field listing
    0.3% (2019 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 89
    HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS field listing
    130,000 (2019 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 39
    HIV/AIDS - deaths field listing
    <1000 (2019 est.)
    Major infectious diseases field listing
    Covid-19 (see note) (2020)
    note: a new coronavirus is causing sustained community spread of respiratory illness (COVID-19) in Italy; sustained community spread means that people have been infected with the virus, but how or where they became infected is not known, and the spread is ongoing; illness with this virus has ranged from mild to severe with fatalities reported; as of 10 November 2020, Italy has reported a total of 902,490 cases of COVID-19 or 14,927 cumulative cases of COVID-19 per 1 million population with 679 cumulative deaths per 1 million population; the US Department of State has issued a Travel Advisory to reconsider travel to Italy due to the recent outbreak of COVID-19; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also recommended postponing nonessential travel to Italy at this time and published additional guidance at; the US Department of Homeland Security has issued instructions requiring US passengers who have been in Italy to travel through select airports where the US Government has implemented enhanced screening procedures
    Obesity - adult prevalence rate field listing
    19.9% (2016)
    country comparison to the world: 108
    Education expenditures field listing
    3.8% of GDP (2016)
    country comparison to the world: 113
    Literacy field listing
    definition: age 15 and over can read and write
    total population: 99.2%
    male: 99.4%
    female: 99% (2018)
    School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education) field listing
    total: 16 years
    male: 16 years
    female: 17 years (2018)
    Unemployment, youth ages 15-24 field listing
    total: 32.2%
    male: 30.4%
    female: 34.8% (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 26
  • Government :: Italy
  • Country name field listing
    conventional long form: Italian Republic
    conventional short form: Italy
    local long form: Repubblica Italiana
    local short form: Italia
    former: Kingdom of Italy
    etymology: derivation is unclear, but the Latin "Italia" may come from the Oscan "Viteliu" meaning "[Land] of Young Cattle" (the bull was a symbol of southern Italic tribes)
    Government type field listing
    parliamentary republic
    Capital field listing
    name: Rome
    geographic coordinates: 41 54 N, 12 29 E
    time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
    daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
    etymology: by tradition, named after Romulus, one of the legendary founders of the city and its first king
    Administrative divisions field listing

    15 regions (regioni, singular - regione) and 5 autonomous regions (regioni autonome, singular - regione autonoma)

    regions: Abruzzo, Basilicata, Calabria, Campania, Emilia-Romagna, Lazio (Latium), Liguria, Lombardia, Marche, Molise, Piemonte (Piedmont), Puglia (Apulia), Toscana (Tuscany), Umbria, Veneto;

    autonomous regions: Friuli Venezia Giulia, Sardegna (Sardinia), Sicilia (Sicily), Trentino-Alto Adige (Trentino-South Tyrol) or Trentino-Suedtirol (German), Valle d'Aosta (Aosta Valley) or Vallee d'Aoste (French)

    Independence field listing
    17 March 1861 (Kingdom of Italy proclaimed; Italy was not finally unified until 1871)
    National holiday field listing
    Republic Day, 2 June (1946)
    Constitution field listing
    history: previous 1848 (originally for the Kingdom of Sardinia and adopted by the Kingdom of Italy in 1861); latest enacted 22 December 1947, adopted 27 December 1947, entered into force 1 January 1948
    amendments: proposed by both houses of Parliament; passage requires two successive debates and approval by absolute majority of each house on the second vote; a referendum is only required when requested by one fifth of the members of either house, by voter petition, or by five Regional Councils (elected legislative assemblies of the 15 first-level administrative regions and 5 autonomous regions of Italy); referendum not required if an amendment has been approved by a two-thirds majority in each house in the second vote; amended many times, last in 2012; note - a referendum held on 4 December 2016 on constitutional amendments was defeated
    International law organization participation field listing
    accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
    Citizenship field listing
    citizenship by birth: no
    citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Italy
    dual citizenship recognized: yes
    residency requirement for naturalization: 4 years for EU nationals, 5 years for refugees and specified exceptions, 10 years for all others
    Suffrage field listing
    18 years of age; universal except in senatorial elections, where minimum age is 25
    Executive branch field listing
    chief of state: President Sergio MATTARELLA (since 3 February 2015)
    head of government: Prime Minister Giuseppe CONTE (since 1 June 2018); the prime minister's official title is President of the Council of Ministers; note - CONTE resigned on 20 August 2019 but returned as prime minister after PD and M5S agreed to form a new coalition government on 28 August 2019
    cabinet: Council of Ministers proposed by the prime minister, known officially as the President of the Council of Ministers and locally as the Premier; nominated by the president; the current deputy prime ministers, known officially as vice-presidents of the Council of Ministers, are Matteo Salvini (L) and Luigi Di Maio (M5S) (since 1 June 2018)
    elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by an electoral college consisting of both houses of Parliament and 58 regional representatives for a 7-year term (no term limits); election last held on 31 January 2015 (next to be held in 2022); prime minister appointed by the president, confirmed by parliament
    election results: Sergio MATTARELLA (independent) elected president; electoral college vote count in fourth round - 665 out of 1,009 (505-vote threshold)
    Legislative branch field listing
    description: bicameral Parliament or Parlamento consists of:
    Senate or Senato della Repubblica (321 seats; 116 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote, 193 members in multi-seat constituencies and 6 members in multi-seat constituencies abroad directly elected by party-list proportional representation vote to serve 5-year terms and 6 ex-officio members appointed by the president of the Republic to serve for life)
    Chamber of Deputies or Camera dei Deputati (630 seats; 629 members directly elected in single- and multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote and 1 member from Valle d'Aosta elected by simple majority vote; members serve 5-year terms); note - a 29 March 2020 referendum on the proposed reduction of Parliament membership has been postponed indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic
    Senate - last held on 4 March 2018 (next to be held in March 2023)
    Chamber of Deputies - last held on 4 March 2018 (next to be held in March 2023)
    election results:
    Senate - percent of vote by party - center-right coalition 37.5% (L 17.6%, FI 14.4%, FdI 4.3%, UdC 1.2%), M5S 32.2%, center-left coalition (PD 19.1%, +E 2.3%, I 0.5%, CP 0.5%, SVP-PATT 0.4%), LeU 3.3%; seats by party - center-right coalition 77(L 37, FI 33, FdI 7), M5S 68, center-left coalition 44(PD 43, SVP-PATT 1), LeU 4; composition - men 208, women 113, percent of women 35.2%

    Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - center-right coalition 37% (L 17.4%, FI 14%, FdI 4.4%, UdC 1.3%), M5S 33%, center-left coalition 22.9% (PD 18.8%, E+ 2.6%, I 0.6%, CP 0.5%, SVP-PATT 0.4%); seats by party - center-right coalition 151 (L73, FI 59, FdI 19), M5S 133, center-left coalition 88 (PD 86, SVP 2), LeU 14; composition - men 405, women 225, percent of women 35.7%; note - total Parliament percent of women 35.5%
    Note: in October 2019, Italy's Parliament voted to reduce the number of Senate seats from 315 to 200 and the number of Chamber of Deputies seats from 630 to 400; the law is subject to a referendum to be held between 15 April and 15 June 2020; changes will be effective for the 2023 election if the law is adopted
    Judicial branch field listing
    highest courts: Supreme Court of Cassation or Corte Suprema di Cassazione (consists of the first president (chief justice), deputy president, 54 justices presiding over 6 civil and 7 criminal divisions, and 288 judges; an additional 30 judges of lower courts serve as supporting judges; cases normally heard by 5-judge panels; more complex cases heard by 9-judge panels); Constitutional Court or Corte Costituzionale (consists of the court president and 14 judges)
    judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court judges appointed by the High Council of the Judiciary, headed by the president of the republic; judges may serve for life; Constitutional Court judges - 5 appointed by the president, 5 elected by Parliament, 5 elected by select higher courts; judges serve up to 9 years
    subordinate courts: various lower civil and criminal courts (primary and secondary tribunals and courts of appeal)
    Political parties and leaders field listing

    Governing Coalition:
    Northern League (Lega Nord) or Lega [Matteo SALVINI]
    Five Star Movement or M5S [Vito CRIMI, acting leader]

    Left-center-right opposition:
    Democratic Party or PD [Nicola ZINGARETTI]
    Forza Italia or FI [Silvio BERLUSCONI]
    Brothers of Italy [Giorgia MELONI]
    Free and Equal (Liberi e Uguali) or LeU [Pietro GRASSO]
    More Europe or +EU [Emma BONINO]
    Popular Civic List or CP [Beatrice LORENZIN]

    Other parties and parliamentary groups:
    Possible [Beatrice BRIGNONE]
    Us with Italy [Raffaele FITTO]
    South Tyrolean People's Party or SVP [Philipp ACHAMMER]
    Trentino Tyrolean Autonomist Party (Partito Autonomista Trentino Tirolese) or PATT [Franco PANIZZA, secretary]
    Article One or Art.1-MDP [Roberto SPERANZA]

    International organization participation field listing
    ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Arctic Council (observer), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CBSS (observer), CD, CDB, CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EITI (implementing country), EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, G-7, G-8, G-10, G-20, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAIA (observer), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSMA, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, PIF (partner), Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), SICA (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, Union Latina, UNMOGIP, UNRWA, UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
    Diplomatic representation in the US field listing
    chief of mission: Ambassador Armando VARRICCHIO (since 2 March 2016)
    chancery: 3000 Whitehaven Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
    telephone: [1] (202) 612-4400
    FAX: [1] (202) 518-2151
    consulate(s) general: Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Miami, New York, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, San Francisco
    consulate(s): Charlotte (NC), Cleveland (OH), Detroit (MI), Hattiesburg (MS), Honolulu (HI), New Orleans, Newark (NJ), Norfolk (VA), Pittsburgh (PA), Portland (OR), Seattle
    Diplomatic representation from the US field listing
    chief of mission: Ambassador Lewis EISENBERG (since 4 October 2017); note - also accredited to San Marino
    telephone: [39] 06-4674-1
    embassy: Via Vittorio Veneto 121, 00187-Rome
    mailing address: PSC 59, Box 100, APO AE 09624
    FAX: [39] 06-488-2672
    consulate(s) general: Florence, Milan, Naples
    Flag description field listing
    three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), white, and red; design inspired by the French flag brought to Italy by Napoleon in 1797; colors are those of Milan (red and white) combined with the green uniform color of the Milanese civic guard

    note: similar to the flag of Mexico, which is longer, uses darker shades of green and red, and has its coat of arms centered on the white band; Ireland, which is longer and is green (hoist side), white, and orange; also similar to the flag of the Cote d'Ivoire, which has the colors reversed - orange (hoist side), white, and green

    National symbol(s) field listing
    white, five-pointed star (Stella d'Italia); national colors: red, white, green
    National anthem field listing
    name: "Il Canto degli Italiani" (The Song of the Italians)
    lyrics/music: Goffredo MAMELI/Michele NOVARO

    note: adopted 1946; the anthem, originally written in 1847, is also known as "L'Inno di Mameli" (Mameli's Hymn), and "Fratelli D'Italia" (Brothers of Italy)

  • Economy :: Italy
  • Economy - overview field listing

    Italy’s economy comprises a developed industrial north, dominated by private companies, and a less-developed, highly subsidized, agricultural south, with a legacy of unemployment and underdevelopment. The Italian economy is driven in large part by the manufacture of high-quality consumer goods produced by small and medium-sized enterprises, many of them family-owned. Italy also has a sizable underground economy, which by some estimates accounts for as much as 17% of GDP. These activities are most common within the agriculture, construction, and service sectors.

    Italy is the third-largest economy in the euro zone, but its exceptionally high public debt and structural impediments to growth have rendered it vulnerable to scrutiny by financial markets. Public debt has increased steadily since 2007, reaching 131% of GDP in 2017. Investor concerns about Italy and the broader euro-zone crisis eased in 2013, bringing down Italy's borrowing costs on sovereign government debt from euro-era records. The government still faces pressure from investors and European partners to sustain its efforts to address Italy's longstanding structural economic problems, including labor market inefficiencies, a sluggish judicial system, and a weak banking sector. Italy’s economy returned to modest growth in late 2014 for the first time since 2011. In 2015-16, Italy’s economy grew at about 1% each year, and in 2017 growth accelerated to 1.5% of GDP. In 2017, overall unemployment was 11.4%, but youth unemployment remained high at 37.1%. GDP growth is projected to slow slightly in 2018.

    GDP (purchasing power parity) field listing
    $2.317 trillion (2017 est.)
    $2.282 trillion (2016 est.)
    $2.263 trillion (2015 est.)

    note: data are in 2017 dollars

    country comparison to the world: 12
    GDP (official exchange rate) field listing
    $1.939 trillion (2017 est.)
    GDP - real growth rate field listing
    0.34% (2019 est.)
    0.83% (2018 est.)
    1.73% (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 188
    GDP - per capita (PPP) field listing
    $38,200 (2017 est.)
    $37,600 (2016 est.)
    $37,200 (2015 est.)

    note: data are in 2017 dollars

    country comparison to the world: 50
    Gross national saving field listing
    20.3% of GDP (2017 est.)
    19.7% of GDP (2016 est.)
    18.8% of GDP (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 95
    GDP - composition, by end use field listing
    household consumption: 61% (2017 est.)
    government consumption: 18.6% (2017 est.)
    investment in fixed capital: 17.5% (2017 est.)
    investment in inventories: -0.2% (2017 est.)
    exports of goods and services: 31.4% (2017 est.)
    imports of goods and services: -28.3% (2017 est.)
    GDP - composition, by sector of origin field listing
    agriculture: 2.1% (2017 est.)
    industry: 23.9% (2017 est.)
    services: 73.9% (2017 est.)
    Agriculture - products field listing
    fruits, vegetables, grapes, potatoes, sugar beets, soybeans, grain, olives; beef, dairy products; fish
    Industries field listing
    tourism, machinery, iron and steel, chemicals, food processing, textiles, motor vehicles, clothing, footwear, ceramics
    Industrial production growth rate field listing
    2.1% (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 128
    Labor force field listing
    22.92 million (2020 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 23
    Labor force - by occupation field listing
    agriculture: 3.9%
    industry: 28.3%
    services: 67.8% (2011)
    Unemployment rate field listing
    9.88% (2019 est.)
    10.63% (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 145
    Population below poverty line field listing
    29.9% (2012 est.)
    Household income or consumption by percentage share field listing
    lowest 10%: 2.3%
    highest 10%: 26.8% (2000)
    Budget field listing
    revenues: 903.3 billion (2017 est.)
    expenditures: 948.1 billion (2017 est.)
    Taxes and other revenues field listing
    46.6% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 20
    Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) field listing
    -2.3% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 111
    Public debt field listing
    131.8% of GDP (2017 est.)
    132% of GDP (2016 est.)

    note: Italy reports its data on public debt according to guidelines set out in the Maastricht Treaty; general government gross debt is defined in the Maastricht Treaty as consolidated general government gross debt at nominal value, outstanding at the end of the year, in the following categories of government liabilities (as defined in ESA95): currency and deposits (AF.2), securities other than shares excluding financial derivatives (AF.3, excluding AF.34), and loans (AF.4); the general government sector comprises central, state, and local government and social security funds

    country comparison to the world: 5
    Fiscal year field listing
    calendar year
    Inflation rate (consumer prices) field listing
    1.3% (2017 est.)
    -0.1% (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 68
    Current account balance field listing
    $59.517 billion (2019 est.)
    $51.735 billion (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 10
    Exports field listing
    $496.3 billion (2017 est.)
    $454.1 billion (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 9
    Exports - partners field listing
    Germany 12.5%, France 10.3%, US 9%, Spain 5.2%, UK 5.2%, Switzerland 4.6% (2017)
    Exports - commodities field listing
    engineering products, textiles and clothing, production machinery, motor vehicles, transport equipment, chemicals; foodstuffs, beverages, and tobacco; minerals, nonferrous metals
    Imports field listing
    $432.9 billion (2017 est.)
    $389.8 billion (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 13
    Imports - commodities field listing
    engineering products, chemicals, transport equipment, energy products, minerals and nonferrous metals, textiles and clothing; food, beverages, tobacco
    Imports - partners field listing
    Germany 16.3%, France 8.8%, China 7.1%, Netherlands 5.6%, Spain 5.3%, Belgium 4.5% (2017)
    Reserves of foreign exchange and gold field listing
    $151.2 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
    $130.6 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 16
    Debt - external field listing
    $2.444 trillion (31 March 2016 est.)
    $2.3 trillion (31 March 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 9
    Exchange rates field listing
    euros (EUR) per US dollar -
    0.885 (2017 est.)
    0.903 (2016 est.)
    0.9214 (2015 est.)
    0.885 (2014 est.)
    0.7634 (2013 est.)
  • Energy :: Italy
  • Electricity access field listing
    electrification - total population: 100% (2020)
    Electricity - production field listing
    275.3 billion kWh (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 14
    Electricity - consumption field listing
    293.5 billion kWh (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 13
    Electricity - exports field listing
    6.155 billion kWh (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 30
    Electricity - imports field listing
    43.18 billion kWh (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 2
    Electricity - installed generating capacity field listing
    114.2 million kW (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 10
    Electricity - from fossil fuels field listing
    54% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 143
    Electricity - from nuclear fuels field listing
    0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 114
    Electricity - from hydroelectric plants field listing
    14% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 106
    Electricity - from other renewable sources field listing
    32% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 14
    Crude oil - production field listing
    90,000 bbl/day (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 44
    Crude oil - exports field listing
    13,790 bbl/day (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 57
    Crude oil - imports field listing
    1.341 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 7
    Crude oil - proved reserves field listing
    487.8 million bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 45
    Refined petroleum products - production field listing
    1.607 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 12
    Refined petroleum products - consumption field listing
    1.236 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 19
    Refined petroleum products - exports field listing
    615,900 bbl/day (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 13
    Refined petroleum products - imports field listing
    422,500 bbl/day (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 19
    Natural gas - production field listing
    5.55 billion cu m (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 50
    Natural gas - consumption field listing
    75.15 billion cu m (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 11
    Natural gas - exports field listing
    271.8 million cu m (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 44
    Natural gas - imports field listing
    69.66 billion cu m (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 5
    Natural gas - proved reserves field listing
    38.11 billion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 65
    Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy field listing
    351 million Mt (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 20
  • Communications :: Italy
  • Telephones - fixed lines field listing
    total subscriptions: 20,196,475
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 32.4 (2019 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 14
    Telephones - mobile cellular field listing
    total subscriptions: 82,955,151
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 133.08 (2019 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 19
    Telecommunication systems field listing
    general assessment: well-developed, fully automated telephone, and data services; highest mobile penetration rates in Europe, benefitted from progressive govt. programs aimed at developing fiber in broadband sector; leading edge of development with 5G in 6 cities; regulator consults on extending 3.5 Gz licensing; fiber network reaches 60% of population (2020)
    domestic: high-capacity cable and microwave radio relay trunks; 32 per 100 for fixed-line and 133 per 100 for mobile-cellular subscriptions (2019)
    international: country code - 39; landing points for Italy-Monaco, Italy-Libya, Italy-Malta, Italy-Greece-1, Italy-Croatia, BlueMed, Janna, FEA, SeaMeWe-3 & 4 & 5, Trapani-Kelibia, Columbus-III, Didon, GO-1, HANNIBAL System, MENA, Bridge International, Malta-Italy Interconnector, Melita1, IMEWE, VMSCS, AAE-1, and OTEGLOBE, submarine cables that provide links to Asia, the Middle East, Europe, North Africa, Southeast Asia, Australia and US; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (with a total of 5 antennas - 3 for Atlantic Ocean and 2 for Indian Ocean) (2019)
    note: the COVID-19 outbreak is negatively impacting telecommunications production and supply chains globally; consumer spending on telecom devices and services has also slowed due to the pandemic's effect on economies worldwide; overall progress towards improvements in all facets of the telecom industry - mobile, fixed-line, broadband, submarine cable and satellite - has moderated
    Broadcast media field listing
    two Italian media giants dominate - the publicly owned Radiotelevisione Italiana (RAI) with 3 national terrestrial stations and privately owned Mediaset with 3 national terrestrial stations; a large number of private stations and Sky Italia - a satellite TV network; RAI operates 3 AM/FM nationwide radio stations; about 1,300 commercial radio stations
    Internet country code field listing
    Internet users field listing
    total: 46,305,301
    percent of population: 74.39% (July 2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 19
    Broadband - fixed subscriptions field listing
    total: 17,060,505
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 27 (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 12
  • Transportation :: Italy
  • National air transport system field listing
    number of registered air carriers: 9 (2020)
    inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 180
    annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 27,630,435 (2018)
    annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 1.418 billion mt-km (2018)
    Civil aircraft registration country code prefix field listing
    I (2016)
    Airports field listing
    129 (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 44
    Airports - with paved runways field listing
    total: 98 (2017)
    over 3,047 m: 9 (2017)
    2,438 to 3,047 m: 31 (2017)
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 18 (2017)
    914 to 1,523 m: 29 (2017)
    under 914 m: 11 (2017)
    Airports - with unpaved runways field listing
    total: 31 (2013)
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)
    914 to 1,523 m: 10 (2013)
    under 914 m: 20 (2013)
    Heliports field listing
    5 (2013)
    Pipelines field listing
    20223 km gas, 1393 km oil, 1574 km refined products (2013)
    Railways field listing
    total: 20,182 km (2014)
    standard gauge: 18,770.1 km 1.435-m gauge (12,893.6 km electrified) (2014)
    narrow gauge: 122.3 km 1.000-m gauge (122.3 km electrified) (2014)
    1289.3 0.950-m gauge (151.3 km electrified)
    country comparison to the world: 15
    Roadways field listing
    total: 487,700 km (2007)
    paved: 487,700 km (includes 6,700 km of expressways) (2007)
    country comparison to the world: 15
    Waterways field listing
    2,400 km (used for commercial traffic; of limited overall value compared to road and rail) (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 36
    Merchant marine field listing
    total: 1,353
    by type: bulk carrier 48, container ship 9, general cargo 116, oil tanker 120, other 1,060 (2019)
    country comparison to the world: 21
    Ports and terminals field listing
    major seaport(s): Augusta, Cagliari, Genoa, Livorno, Taranto, Trieste, Venice
    oil terminal(s): Melilli (Santa Panagia) oil terminal, Sarroch oil terminal
    container port(s) (TEUs): Genoa (2,622,200), Gioia Tauro (2,448,600) (2017)
    LNG terminal(s) (import): La Spezia, Panigaglia, Porto Levante
  • Military and Security :: Italy
  • Military and security forces field listing
    Italian Armed Forces: Army (Esercito Italiano, EI), Navy (Marina Militare Italiana, MMI; includes aviation, marines), Italian Air Force (Aeronautica Militare Italiana, AMI), Carabinieri Corps (Arma dei Carabinieri, CC) (2019)
    note(s): the Financial Guard (Guardia di Finanza) under the Ministry of Economy and Finance is a force with military status and nationwide remit for financial crime investigations, including narcotics trafficking, smuggling, and illegal immigration
    Military expenditures field listing
    1.22% of GDP (2019 est.)
    1.21% of GDP (2018)
    1.21% of GDP (2017)
    1.18% of GDP (2016)
    1.07% of GDP (2015)
    country comparison to the world: 97
    Military and security service personnel strengths field listing
    the Italian Armed Forces have approximately 271,000 active personnel, including the Carabinieri (96,000 Army; 28,000 Navy; 40,000 Air Force; 107,000 Carabinieri) (2019 est.)
    Military equipment inventories and acquisitions field listing
    the Italian Armed Forces' inventory includes a mix of domestically-produced, jointly-produced, and imported European and US weapons systems; the US is the leading supplier of weapons to Italy since 2010, followed by Germany; the Italian defense industry is capable of producing equipment across all the military domains with particular strengths in naval vessels and aircraft; it also participates in joint development and production of advanced weapons systems with other European countries and the US (2019)
    Military deployments field listing
    900 Afghanistan (NATO); 120 Djibouti; 1,100 Middle East/Iraq/Kuwait (NATO, counter-ISIS campaign, European Assistance Mission Iraq); 620 Kosovo (NATO); 200 Latvia (NATO); 1,050 Lebanon (UNIFIL); 400 Libya; 290 Niger; 150 Somalia (EUTM); 100 United Arab Emirates (April 2020)
    Military service age and obligation field listing
    18-25 years of age for voluntary military service; women may serve in any military branch; Italian citizenship required; 1-year service obligation (2013)
  • Transnational Issues :: Italy
  • Disputes - international field listing

    Italy's long coastline and developed economy entices tens of thousands of illegal immigrants from southeastern Europe and northern Africa

    Refugees and internally displaced persons field listing
    refugees (country of origin): 25,241 (Nigeria), 20,063 (Pakistan), 17,849 (Afghanistan), 15,842 (Mali), 14,029 (Somalia), 12,968 (Gambia), 8,974 (Bangladesh), 7,659 (Cote d'Ivoire), 7,644 (Senegal), 7,118 (Eritrea), 6,995 (Iraq), 6,353 (Ukraine), 5,953 (Ghana) (2019); note - estimate for Ukraine represents asylum applicants since the beginning of the Ukraine crisis in 2014 to July 2018
    stateless persons: 15,822 (2019)

    note: 520,474 estimated refugee and migrant arrivals by sea (January 2015-November 2020); hosts an estimated 96,862 migrants and asylum seekers as of the end of October 2019; 23,370 arrivals in 2018

    Illicit drugs field listing
    important gateway for and consumer of Latin American cocaine and Southwest Asian heroin entering the European market; money laundering by organized crime and from smuggling