The Applicability and Application of the Market Economy Investor Principle
This article depicts core points, including key questions, methodology, findings and policy recommendations as they were presented in a PhD thesis with the same title that was defended on 23 January 2015 at the Faculty of Law at the University of Bergen in Norway. The thesis clarifies the importance of making a distinction between the applicability and application of the MEIP, and provides guidelines on how one should verify compliance with the test. It also elaborates on various subtypes of the MEIP, which is crucial to practitioners. Moreover, it analyses the Commission and EFTA Surveillance Authority’s ‘wide margin of discretion’ in the MEIP cases in light of the limited judicial review. Finally, it scrutinises the criticism of the MEIP as an objective and reliable instrument that detects aid and provides guidelines on how the use of the MEIP may be less prone to errors.
Keywords: Market Economy Investor Principle; Applicability v Application of the MEIP; Objective-Based Approach; Economic v Non-Economic Objectives; Absence of Normal Market Conditions; EEA State Aid Law.