The Italian Almanac

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Lapdance Taxed

The Italian taxman has solved the long-running problem of how much to levy on lap dancing. For the last few years, ever since a huge rise in popularity, lap dancing has been left in a tax-paying limbo. The erotic activity has fallen between the two stools of live shows and concerts on the one hand, and, on the other, entertainment in which the public takes part.

Shows are in the 10% tax bracket while entertainment with audience participation is taxed at 16%. On Friday Italy's tax-collecting agency, the Agenzia alle Entrate, ruled that lap dancing should be bracketed with the latter. "The active participation of the client in the dancer's act and his physical involvement in it are not caused by mere chance but are a strong characteristic of the very nature of the lap dance," the taxman ruled.