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United Textiles: A Missed Opportunity  ∙ Case C-363/16 European Commission v Greece ∙ Annotation  by Wout De Cock and Julie Leroy journal article

Annotation on the Judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union (First Chamber) of 17 January 2018 in Case C-363/16 European Commission v Greece

Wout De Cock, Julie Leroy

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 17 (2018), Issue 2, Page 298 - 304

It is well established that the financial situation of an (insolvent) aid beneficiary does not lead, in principle, to an absolute impossibility to recover unlawful and incompatible State aid. In the annotated case, a Member State argued that it should be entitled to suspend the insolvency proceedings in order to examine the possible relaunch of the insolvent beneficiary’s activities. In this annotation, we discuss the findings of the European Court of Justice with regard to this question and argue that the Court’s findings remain vague and unclear. Furthermore, we discuss the relevant date to assess the failure to recover aid from an insolvent beneficiary and the duty of loyal cooperation between Member States and the Commission. In general, it is argued that the judgment is, in contrast to (parts of) the Opinion of the Advocate General, a mere confirmation of former case law and somewhat disappointing.Keywords: Recovery of unlawful State aid; Financial situation (insolvent) beneficiary; Possibility to suspend recovery proceedings and relaunch activities - Article 108(2)(2) TFEU; Date for assessing failure to recover; Duty of loyal cooperation




Is Belgium and Forum 187 v. Commission a Suitable Legal Source for an EU "At Arm’s Length Principle"? journal article

Tony Joris, Wout De Cock

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 16 (2017), Issue 4, Page 607 - 616

This article revisits the facts and merits of the Belgium and Forum 187 v. Commission judgment of the European Court of Justice. The European Commission refers to this 2006 judgment to justify the use of an at arm’s length principle in its controversial State aid decisions on advance pricing agreements. We will argue that the European Court of Justice did not intend to establish and endorse such principle in this judgment and that the Commission therefore overstretches the impact of this judgment. Keywords: Belgium; Forum 187; Coordination Centres; Advance Pricing Agreements; At Arm’s Length Principle.

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