State Aid Law Blog

State Aid Uncovered Blog/Guest State Aid Blog

On a weekly basis Phedon Nicolaides posts critical analysis pieces on the latest State aid judgments and decisions on his blog State Aid Uncovered. Each article presents the main points of a court ruling or Commission‘s decision, places them in the context of similar case law or practice, assesses the underlying reasoning, and identifies any inconsistencies or contradictions.
Occasional guest blog posts by other State aid experts complement the State aid knowledge hub.

Join the debate now!

Professor at Maastricht University; Professor at University of Nicosia, and Academic Director at Lexxion Training

Member States Must Recover of their Own Initiative Illegally Granted Aid

Aid granted illegal must be recovered by the granting authority without any need for a prior Commission decision ordering recovery. The amount of recovered aid may be limited to that which is in excess of what is allowed by the GBER. Introduction It is a well-established principle in the case law that a “prudent market operator” is responsible to check […]

Injection of Capital in a Postal Operator

The resources of a public undertaking necessarily count as “state resources”, regardless of the degree of autonomy of the public undertaking. However, not every decision of a public undertaking can necessarily be “imputed” to the state. A prudent investor may take into account authorised State aid. A prudent investor may tolerate short-term losses if it can realise sufficient profits in […]

A First Commission Decision on Natural Gas Storage

Compensation that guarantees a normal or fair rate of return eliminates risk that is inherent in market transactions and therefore confers an advantage in the meaning of Article 107(1) TFEU. Introduction On 23 March 2022, the European Commission announced plans to mitigate the spike in energy prices caused by the war in Ukraine. Chief among those plans were proposals for […]

Intra-State Transfers and the Discretion of Public Authorities

Resources transferred from one public authority to another for the purpose of being used to subsidise undertakings do not fall within the scope of Article 107(1) TFEU if the recipient authority has discretion in their disbursement. Introduction A public authority that carries out economic activities becomes an undertaking that is subject to the prohibition of Article 107(1) TFEU. When the […]

A New Temporary Crisis Framework

Introduction A new Temporary Framework which is called “Temporary Crisis Framework” [TCF] to distinguish it from the currently applicable Temporary Framework on covid-19 related State aid was adopted on 23 March 2022, almost two years to the date of the publication of the rules on covid-19 related State aid.[1] The purpose of the TCF is to enable Member States to […]

I. Vouchers for SMEs II. Funding of Aid with Revenue from Levies Imposed on the Aid Beneficiaries

State aid rules apply both to direct and indirect beneficiaries of aid. Introduction This week’s article reviews a Commission decision and a judgment of the Court of Justice. The Commission decision concerns Italian vouchers for SMEs to pay for the use of fast broadband services. The judgment deals with a German measure supporting milk quality tests. In both cases an […]

Another Altmark Compliant Case!

Any non-SGEI obligation attached to a public service contract may not raise the cost of the service above the level of the “least cost to the community”. Introduction It is very rare for measures of compensation for public service obligations to be found by the European Commission to be compliant with the Altmark conditions. Nonetheless, in the past two years […]

The Concept of “Undertaking in Difficulty” and Evidential Requirements

The “subscribed share capital” of a company includes the capital that is already paid and any future amount that shareholders have irrevocably committed to pay. Introduction Undertakings in difficulty may not receive any kind of aid except aid to compensate for damage caused by a natural disaster or exceptional occurrence and, under strict conditions, rescue and/or restructuring aid. In most […]

Security of Energy Supply

Guaranteed supply of electricity at fixed prices to a state-owned network operator involves a transfer of state resources to the supplier. Guaranteed supply of electricity at fixed prices confers an advantage to the supplier. Introduction Member States are allowed to take measures to ensure the security of energy supplies. There is a variety of such measures: imposition of obligations on […]

Compensation for Damage and De Minimis Aid

Compensation for damage caused by protected animals is State aid. Member States may categorise compensatory payments as de minimis aid and refuse to make payments in excess of the de minimis threshold. Introduction Advantage in the meaning of Article 107(1) TFEU is any benefit granted by the state that is not available under normal market conditions. Normal market conditions are […]

A First Commission Decision on Natural Gas Storage

Compensation that guarantees a normal or fair rate of return eliminates risk that is inherent in market transactions and therefore confers an advantage in the meaning of Article 107(1) TFEU. Introduction On 23 March 2022, the European Commission announced plans to mitigate the spike in energy prices caused by the war in Ukraine. Chief among those plans were proposals for […]

Intra-State Transfers and the Discretion of Public Authorities

Resources transferred from one public authority to another for the purpose of being used to subsidise undertakings do not fall within the scope of Article 107(1) TFEU if the recipient authority has discretion in their disbursement. Introduction A public authority that carries out economic activities becomes an undertaking that is subject to the prohibition of Article 107(1) TFEU. When the […]

A New Temporary Crisis Framework

Introduction A new Temporary Framework which is called “Temporary Crisis Framework” [TCF] to distinguish it from the currently applicable Temporary Framework on covid-19 related State aid was adopted on 23 March 2022, almost two years to the date of the publication of the rules on covid-19 related State aid.[1] The purpose of the TCF is to enable Member States to […]

I. Vouchers for SMEs II. Funding of Aid with Revenue from Levies Imposed on the Aid Beneficiaries

State aid rules apply both to direct and indirect beneficiaries of aid. Introduction This week’s article reviews a Commission decision and a judgment of the Court of Justice. The Commission decision concerns Italian vouchers for SMEs to pay for the use of fast broadband services. The judgment deals with a German measure supporting milk quality tests. In both cases an […]

Another Altmark Compliant Case!

Any non-SGEI obligation attached to a public service contract may not raise the cost of the service above the level of the “least cost to the community”. Introduction It is very rare for measures of compensation for public service obligations to be found by the European Commission to be compliant with the Altmark conditions. Nonetheless, in the past two years […]

The Concept of “Undertaking in Difficulty” and Evidential Requirements

The “subscribed share capital” of a company includes the capital that is already paid and any future amount that shareholders have irrevocably committed to pay. Introduction Undertakings in difficulty may not receive any kind of aid except aid to compensate for damage caused by a natural disaster or exceptional occurrence and, under strict conditions, rescue and/or restructuring aid. In most […]

Security of Energy Supply

Guaranteed supply of electricity at fixed prices to a state-owned network operator involves a transfer of state resources to the supplier. Guaranteed supply of electricity at fixed prices confers an advantage to the supplier. Introduction Member States are allowed to take measures to ensure the security of energy supplies. There is a variety of such measures: imposition of obligations on […]

Compensation for Damage and De Minimis Aid

Compensation for damage caused by protected animals is State aid. Member States may categorise compensatory payments as de minimis aid and refuse to make payments in excess of the de minimis threshold. Introduction Advantage in the meaning of Article 107(1) TFEU is any benefit granted by the state that is not available under normal market conditions. Normal market conditions are […]

Compensation and State Aid

An event that causes damage for which the state is liable is distinct from the act that confers the right for compensation. Introduction The concept of State aid covers all resources that are controlled by the state, regardless of the reason why such resources may be transferred to or put at the disposal of an undertaking. On 25 January 2022, […]

The Mysterious “Substantial” Competitive Effect

State aid has a “substantial” effect on competitors when it has a direct and negative impact on their market positions that goes beyond the typical influence of aid on competitive relationships. Introduction State aid always harms competition and competitors. A public measure that has no effect on competition is not State aid. Therefore, it is not enough for a company […]

Open Access Content Related to Covid-19: At a Glance

During these tough times, Lexxion Publisher wants to help to spread current news and updates on new regulations or support measures for combating the impact of the corona pandemic. Various contributions will be available as open access during the upcoming weeks. This post lists all contributions and will be updated on a rolling basis. Contributions related to State Aid & […]

Covid-19 Support Package for Entrepreneurs: An Update from Poland

We are happy to share with you an update on the Covid-19 support package that Poland is creating to support entrepeneurs fighting the impact of the corona pandemic. Our guest auhor P. Kamil Rosiak is Attorney-at-Law & Partner Associate at KPMG D.Dobkowski LP in Warsaw.* On 28 March 2020 the lower house of Polish parliament (Sejm) passed a bill (so […]

Live Webinar: Covid-19 & State Aid Law in the UK Now

Lexxion has created another new live webinar to keep you updated on current developments of Covid-19 and State aid law in the UK after Brexit. Leading State aid experts Jonathan Branton, George Peretz QC and Alexander Rose will work through the current EU State aid rules and answer your questions.   ✓ Join from wherever you are – high-quality content at […]

Join our live webinar with Phedon Nicolaides on ‚COVID-19 and State Aid Law‘ on 2 April

Due to global developments and responding to various requests, Lexxion has created a live webinar to keep you updated on the latest news regarding the corona virus and State aid law. You can join from wherever you are and receive high-quality content at your (home) office.   In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, EU Member States are urgently rolling out […]

Court’s Diary – January 2018

Find below the court’s diary for all State aid cases this month. Would you like to write a comment on one of them? Please don’t hesitate and get in touch with us (stateaidhub@lexxion.eu), we are happy to publish your comment on the blog.   Tuesday 16/01/2018 Judgment in case T-747/15 – EDF v Commission (General Court – Third Chamber) Wednesday 17/01/2018 Judgment […]

15th Jubilee Feature – State Aid Experts Paying Court to EStAL: Alexander Rose

Since 2002 Lexxion Publisher’s European State Aid Law Quarterly – EStAL serves as a forum for dialogue and deliberation on all issues related to State aid. On the occasion of our 15th anniversary special feature we have gathered our State aid family to reflect upon their joint journey together with our precious EStAL and of course our favourite topic State […]

15th Jubilee Feature – State Aid Experts Paying Court to EStAL: Mihalis Kekelekis

Since 2002 Lexxion Publisher’s European State Aid Law Quarterly – EStAL serves as a forum for dialogue and deliberation on all issues related to State aid. On the occasion of our 15th anniversary special feature we have gathered our State aid family to reflect upon their joint journey together with our precious EStAL and of course our favourite topic State […]

15th Jubilee Feature – State Aid Experts Paying Court to EStAL: Birgit Haslinger

Since 2002 Lexxion Publisher’s European State Aid Law Quarterly – EStAL serves as a forum for dialogue and deliberation on all issues related to State aid. On the occasion of our 15th anniversary special feature we have gathered our State aid family to reflect upon their joint journey together with our precious EStAL and of course our favourite topic State […]

15th Jubilee Feature – State Aid Experts Paying Court to EStAL: Ilkka Aalto-Setälä

Since 2002 Lexxion Publisher’s European State Aid Law Quarterly – EStAL serves as a forum for dialogue and deliberation on all issues related to State aid. On the occasion of our 15th anniversary special feature we have gathered our State aid family to reflect upon their joint journey together with our precious EStAL and of course our favourite topic State […]

15th Jubilee Feature – State Aid Experts Paying Court to EStAL: Sara Gobbato

Since 2002 Lexxion Publisher’s European State Aid Law Quarterly – EStAL serves as a forum for dialogue and deliberation on all issues related to State aid. On the occasion of our 15th anniversary special feature we have gathered our State aid family to reflect upon their joint journey together with our precious EStAL and of course our favourite topic State […]

How to Submit a Blog Post

Do you want to share your analysis of a State aid law topic? We invite you to submit your post on, for example: recent European, national or international judgments or legislation with relevance to EU State aid law; new developments, publications, hot topics in EU State aid law. The recommended length of the post is 500-2,000 words incl. references (endnotes). Your analysis will be published under the category ‘Guest State Aid Blog’.

Here’s how you can publish a post on the Blog as a guest author:

Step 1: Submit your draft post as a Word file to stateaidhub[a]lexxion.eu.

Step 2: The StateAidHub team will review your draft to make sure its content and quality fit the blog. If needed, they will suggest what improvements you should make.

Step 3: Once your draft has been finalised and accepted, we will send you a link to register and log-in to the Blog as a guest author.

Step 4: Once you have logged-in to the blog, you can upload and publish your post.

Step 5: Enjoy the fame!

Submit your guest blog post

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