Basically, yes. The US imposes stiff tariffs and there are also high transport costs in sending goods across the ocean. But because of the European Union, there are no tariffs between France and Italy. There is also great possibility for arbitrage, since the two countries share a border, and people are always going from one place to another. Still, the cheapest place for Italian goods is almost always -- surprise -- in Italy. Of course, this simple rule doesn't always apply. For example, while prices for Italian clothes are quite high in Asia, Hong Kong is still a shopping paradise for shorter people, since smaller sizes are more readily available there than in Milan. Similarly, if you have an Asian complexion; the colors that the Italian makers send to Asia will generally be better than the ones distributed in Europe and the US.