Goods and services (Directive 2004/113)

AuthorRenga, Simonetta
9 Goods and services (Directive 2004/113)89
9.1 General (legal) context
9.1.1 Surveys and reports about the difficulties linked to equal access to and sup ply of
goods and services
In Italy, there is no debate regarding discrimination based on sex in the access to or prices
of services and such differential treatment is very rare. The sector where discrimination is
most likely to take place is that of i nsurances and financial services, and with respect to
this, the directive is crucially important in Italy, as elsewhere. There is no case law on the
enforcement of Directive 2004/113.
9.1.2 Specific problems of discrimination in the online environment/digital
market/collaborative economy
We are not aware of any specific problems of gender discrimination concerning the access
to and supply of goods and services in the online environment/digital market/collaborative
economy. There is no evidence o f any engagement in gender discrimination in relation to
this issue by any private or public stakeholders, such as national equality bodies and
collective agreements. On the side of consumer protection bodies, however, the Consiglio
Nazionale dei Consumatori e degli Utenti (CNCU) 2016 report recommends responsibility,
respect of general rules therefore also anti-discrimination rul es contained in our
Constitution and labour law legislation and platform transparency in the online
environment/digital market/collaborative economy. The report was presented at the
region’s conference, where the que stion of whe ther the collaborative economy increases
or decreases equality was raised.90
9.1.3 Political and societal debate
There is no debate among scholars or any other initiatives aim ed at spreading awareness
of Directive 2004/113. This is probably both the cause and the effect of the merely formal
implementation of the directive. Indeed, Decree No. 196/2007, which implemented EC
Directive 2004/113, repeats the text of the directive literally. Substantive implementation
would require measures aimed at making people and institutions aware of the importance
of this issue.
9.2 Prohibition of direct and indirect discrimination
EC Directive 2004/113 has been implemented by Decree No. 196/2007, which ad ds 10
articles to the Equal Opportunities Code (Articles 55bis to 55decies of Decr ee No.
198/2006). The decree literally repeats the text of the directive.
We do not yet have any examples of cases regarding the implementation of Directive
2004/113. Nor were there any reported c ases on gender discrimination regarding goods
and services before the implementation of the directive.
9.3 Material scope
The Italian transposition is worded in the same way as the directive (Article 55t er
Decree No. 198/2006).
89 See e.g. Caracciolo di Torella, E. and McLellan, B. (2018) Gender equality and the collaborative economy,
European network of legal experts in gender equality and non-discrimination, available at
90 See

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