Following directly on from the completion of the European Commission’s
State Aid Action Plan, this thorough guide provides a concise review of the
current state aid policy of the European Community. Certain kinds of state aid
are no longer allowed, some other kinds are now possible, while certain types
and amounts of aid are now subject to more detailed and rigorous assessment.
Increasingly, Member States tend to shift emphasis from supporting individual
companies or sectors, towards pursuing horizontal policy objectives.
The book not only explains the principles on which European state aid policy
is based and how it is applied in practice, but also highlights recent
legislation adopted with the ultimate aim of directing Member States towards
meeting the Lisbon objectives and responding to successive European Council
calls for ‘less and better targeted aid’. The authors identify the most recent
sources of EC law on state aid, and analyse the latest landmark European
Commission decisions and judgements of EU Courts. They also offer useful
guidance on how to design state aid measures.
Among the many specific topics covered are the following:
• the balancing test for compatibility with the common market;
• exceptions for transport and ‘services of general economic interest’;
• the Commission’s supervisory control; and
• state aid monitoring procedures.
Numerous revealing case studies are presented, and useful appendices offer
legislative texts and insights into defined areas of practice such as de
minimise aid, the SME definition, risk capital for SMEs, aid for research and
development and innovation, aid for rescue and restructuring, regional aid, or
finally aid for agricultural, environmental or transport purposes.
The guide has developed from seminars on EC state aid law and policy organised
during the past decade by the European Institute of Public Administration
(EIPA). In line with those seminars, this book will be of great practical
value for policymakers and practitioners managing state aid in the public
administrations of the EC Member States and its partner countries.
Note on Authors. Acknowledgements. Preface. Table of Cases. Table of
Legislation and Other Official Documents. Recent Policy Developments.
Introduction. 1. The Objectives of EC Competition Policy. 2. The
Rules of Competition in the EC. 3. EC State Aid Policy and Control.
Chapter I: The Concept of State Aid. 1.
State Aid in the EC Treaty. 2. Article 87(1) EC: Aid Incompatible with the
Common Market. Chapter II: Exceptions under Article 87 EC. 1. Aid that
Is Compatible with the Common Market. 2. Aid that May Be Compatible
with the Common Market. 3. The Balancing Test. 4. Other Criteria
and Factors in the Evaluation of State Aid Schemes. 5. Other Exceptions
to Article 87(1) EC.
Chapter III: State Aid Procedures.
1. Treaty Provisions. 2. Commission’s Supervisory Control. Further
Reading. Appendices. I. A Diagrammatic Presentation of Regulation
659/1999. II. De minimis Aid: Regulation 1998/2006. III. General
Block Exemption Regulation (GBER). IV. SME Definition. V. Aid to
Promote Risk Capital in SMEs. VI. Aid for Research, Development and
Innovation (R&D&I). VII. Aid for Rescue and Restructuring of
Companies in Difficulty. VIII. Regional Aid. IX. Aid for
Environmental Protection. X. State Aid for Agriculture. XI. Main
Provisions of Regulation 1370/2007 on Public Passenger Transport Services by
Rail and by Road. XII. Role of National Courts in the EC System of
State Aid Control.