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France/SNCM v European Commision  ∙ Cases T-366/13 and T-454/13 ∙ Annotation by Adrien Giraud

DOI https://doi.org/10.21552/estal/2017/3/17

Adrien Giraud


On 1 March 2017, the General Court confirmed a decision by which the European Commission ordered France to recover €220 million from SNCM. In practice, the judgment has little consequences because of SNCM’s bankruptcy. From a legal standpoint however, the judgment is significant because it refuses to endorse the Commission’s thesis according to which Member States must in all cases evidence a market failure in order to correctly define a SGEI. In other words, the Commission attempted to increase the scope of the control it performs on the definition of SGEIs and the GC – as it has sometimes in the past – refused to condone this approach.
Keywords: Altmark; SGEI; Market Failure; Public Service.

Adrien Giraud, Partner at Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP in Brussels. The author wishes to thank Laure Maes for her research but remain solely responsible for the content of this article.

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