Preventive Controls “Condition of the partner verifiable via ITA”

Marcello Mantelli
Lawyer in Milan and Turin

Italian companies invest considerable resources to promote sales abroad, but they do not always pay equal attention to the protection of their commercial affairs in the preventive phase.

In fact, when the order acquisition by a new customer appears close, it is difficult, after all the commercial efforts made, to be too strict on the contractual aspects that protect the economic operation and the related credit. Indeed, it is often believed that these aspects represent e a kind of bureaucracy that hinders the deal. But this is not the case: there is in fact some information that should be requested by the Italian exporter to the potential buyer, both for the good success of the commercial operation and to protect its commercial credit.

As a rule, you should always ask for information about a new customer, but they are not always complete. Sometimes the simple fact that a company in its sector, known and solid, pays suppliers on time, is already considered by those who sell, useful information and a reliability index to make the first sale, at least for a not high value.

Preliminarily, it is advisable to be provided at least with the general situation of the customer from an economic, patrimonial and legal point of view, for example by resorting to the Italian Trade Agency (

Alternatively, you can resort to the main suppliers of commercial information on the market, or, if you do not want to pay anything, you can directly ask the customer for an extract from its business register.

The service of the ITA and other information providers is chargeable. However, using the ITA has the advantage of being able to obtain a complete report, upon prior estimate, even on a single company with the payment of a reasonable lump sum.

Country risk, on the other hand, can be defined as the set of risks that arise when an investment is made in a broad sense, and therefore also a sale, in a foreign country and consists of: sovereign risk (ability of the foreign state to honour its commitments to investors), political risk (non-economic events arising from conflicts and unilateral acts of the government of the foreign country), economic risk (economic policy, degree of openness of the economy), transfer risk (restrictions on capital movements and repatriation of dividends and profits), exchange rate risk (fluctuations) and geographical location risk (contagion effect in the event of a crisis).

A solvent buyer could in fact, for reasons of domestic policy of his country, have a payment destined to the Italian supplier blocked by arrangement of the central bank.

To monitor country risk, the main sources of information are the IMF, the World Bank and the OECD, but also our Sace ( can provide a first level of control.

To be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, analysing the country risk and the amount of commercial credit at stake, a possible insurance of political risk, for example with Sace.


Main sources of information

The websites of the IMF, the World Bank and the OECD can be consulted.  First level of control can also be provided by Sace.

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Dear Aurelia, the information you have provided are not sufficient for an answer which is subject to a professional engagement. In any case, we should study the provisions of the contract and identify governing law of the contract.If it does not provide anything on governing law then conflict law shall apply (in the most part of the countries likely the governing law will be the law of the country where the agent is domiciled). best regards Marcello Mantelli


I signed a contract with a fashion agency but there were no termination clauses in the contract and decided to withdraw it before one week after signature so sent them an email but after 14 days they sent me an email and asserted that because i didnt withdraw in legal deadlines i have to perform the contract and pay whole money.Noboday told me about any deadlines and nothing was in the contract!! Why did they claim such a thing?


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