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The Rise of an (Autonomous) Arm’s Length Principle in EU State Aid Rules?

Fausta Todhe


Keywords: Fiscal State aid, Arm’s length principle, Tax rulings

In its recent State aid Decisions, the Commission claimed that an (autonomous) arm’s length principle, independent from the one originating in the OECD framework, is embedded in Article 107(1) TFEU as a tool to ensure the protection of the principle of equality. Considered a novelty, the Commission’s approach has been challenged not only by the appeals submitted from the interested parties but also from a number of practitioners and academics. Although the last words remain still with the Courts, the purpose of this article is to join the debate and bring a personal view on the matter. It therefore reviews the recent State aid Decisions on individual aid in order to determine the potential embedding of an (autonomous) arm’s length principle in European State aid law.
Keywords: Fiscal State aid; Arm’s length principle; Tax rulings

Fausta Todhe is a doctoral candidate at the Institute for European Studies at Vrije Universiteit Brussels; Lawyer at ‘Todhe & Associates’ Law Firm. For correspondence: <>.


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