State aid

State aid rules are essential to help avoid distortions of competition due to member states intervening in support of certain firms. Strengthening state aid mechanisms is key to further improve the functioning of the single market and must go hand in hand with a strong focus on stimulus and growth.

It is important to further increase discipline in the field of state aid, in particular by strengthening preventive measures and considering ways to concretely increase responsibilities for member states in case of breach.

Decentralisation of EU state aid

In recent years, more and more aid has been exempted from the European Commission’s centralised control.  Decentralisation risks leading to subjective application of the rules by member states and increased illegal state aid with detrimental effects to free and fair competition. Decentralisation needs to be counterbalanced by increased legal certainty and clarity, as well as more transparency and reporting obligations for member states.

Global dimension of EU state aid

The global dimension deserves special attention in the EU state aid framework: state aid rules only arrange for a level playing field within Europe, without ensuring also a level playing field for Europe’s industry in competing worldwide, especially in industrial sectors supported by stimulus measures in other regions.

Publications

Position papers Date
General block exemption regulation (state aid): targeted review - a BusinessEurope position paper 20/12/2021
Climate, energy and environmental state aid guidelines - a BusinessEurope position paper 02/08/2021
Revision of the communication on state aid rules for important projects of common European interest (IPCEI) - a BusinessEurope position paper 27/04/2021
Revision of the Energy and Environmental State Aid Guidelines - BusinessEurope's reply to the consultation by the European Commission 26/01/2021
Improving EU competition and state aid policy - a BusinessEurope position paper 04/09/2019
State aid modernisation - Fitness check 23/07/2019
Is there a role for capacity mechanisms in Europe’s power markets? BusinessEurope reaction to the Commission’s state aid sector inquiry into capacity mechanisms 13/07/2016
State aid framework for research, development and innovation - a BusinessEurope position paper 18/03/2014
BusinessEurope views on the revision of the environmental and energy state aid guidelines 20/02/2014
BusinessEurope views on the draft guidelines on State aid for rescue and restructuring 07/01/2014
Speeches Date
EU state aid control in the context of global competition - Address by Morten Qvist Fog at the ERA annual conference on European state aid law 2015 12/11/2015
Public letters Date
Draft revised general block exemption regulation - Letter from Markus J. Beyrer to Joaquin Almunia 06/05/2014
Revision of the draft environmental and energy aid guidelines - Letter from Markus J. Beyrer to Alexander Italianer 26/03/2014
Last updated: 6 April 2020