The relevance of the OECD and UN Model Conventions and their Commentaries for the interpretation of Italian tax treaties
This chapter aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the degree of
consistency of the treaties to avoid double taxation concluded by Italy with the
OECD Model Tax Convention on Income and Capital and the United Nations Model
Double Taxation Convention between Developed and Developing Countries
(respectively the OECD Model and the UN Model). It is worth pointing out from
the very outset that all the treaties are generally modelled on the OECD Model
but also that the treaties are, in large part, consistent with both Models, due
to the similarity between the OECD Model and the UN Model. However, as will be
shown in this chapter, there are cases in which all or some of the treaties
comply with the UN Model but not with the OECD Model.
In some cases, these variations are due to several relatively recent
modifications of the OECD Model. Indeed, modifications to the OECD Model over
recent years have reduced the degree of consistency between the OECD Model and
the treaties, which have not been modified accordingly.
In most other cases, all or some of the treaties comply only with the UN Model
due to a choice made by Italy to adopt clauses that are divergent from the OECD
The analysis of the points of convergence and divergence from the Models will
adhere to the numerical listing of the different articles of Italy’s treaties.
Therefore, in respect of each clause, this chapter indicates convergence or
divergence, with the result that such a schematic structure should clarify which
of the clauses included in the Models can be considered as ‘standard
clauses’ of the treaties. The term ‘standard clause’ will be
italicized when it can be inferred that a clause of the Models has been adopted
by Italy in the vast majority of its treaties, thereby constituting a kind of
deliberate policy choice.