Skip to content

The search returned 16 results.


The Status of Guidelines and Notices in Relation to the Application of Article 107(1) TFEU · Case C-211/20 P Valencia CF · Annotation by Cees Dekker journal article

Annotation of the Judgment of the Court of Justice (First Chamber) of 10 November 2022 in Case C‑211/20 P European Commission v Valencia Club de Fútbol SAD and Kingdom of Spain

Cees Dekker

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 22 (2023), Issue 2, Page 193 - 198

It is settled case law that the Commission may adopt guidelines and notices setting out how it will exercise its discretion under the State aid rules. These guidelines and notices limit the way in which the Commission exercises its powers. In the present case, the Court of Justice also assumes that role in relation to the Commission's Guarantee Notice. However, unlike other cases in which the Union Courts have ruled on the role of the Guidelines, which concerned the Commission's application of Article 107(3) TFEU, the present case concerns the application of Article 107(1) TFEU. It is also settled case law that the Commission does not have a wide margin of discretion in the application of Article 107(1) TFEU, as the concept of aid is legal in nature. The question is, therefore, whether the Commission can impose restrictions on itself in its assessment under Article 107(1) TFEU. The Court of Justice ignores this question.





Risk Finance Aid: journal article

Facilitating Access to Finance for SMEs, Start-Ups and Small or Innovative Middle-Capitalisation Firms

Gianni De Stefano, Wouter Dutillieux

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 21 (2022), Issue 3, Page 222 - 236

SMEs are the backbone of Member States’ economies, and are central to the EU’s economic development and resilience as a whole. Risk finance aid addresses market failures or other relevant obstacles that prevent SMEs and certain other non-large enterprises (ie, start-ups or certain middle-capitalisation firms (mid-caps), namely small or innovative mid-caps) from attracting the financing they require (eg, loans, guarantees or equity) to develop to their full potential. Risk finance aid for SMEs and start-ups, up to €15 million per beneficiary, can be block-exempted under the General Block Exemption Regulation (GBER); whereas aid to innovative or small mid-caps, or aid that goes beyond the GBER conditions, can be notified by the Member State and approved by the European Commission under the Risk Finance Guidelines. This article describes the revised Risk Finance Guidelines of 2021 and the ongoing revision of the GBER section on risk finance. Keywords: risk finance; risk capital; SMEs; start-ups; mid-caps; access to finance; GBER; Risk Finance Guidelines



2ND ESTAL PHD AWARD NOMINATIONS ∙ Soft Law and Their Symbiotic Relationship with the Block Exemptions? journal article

A Nordic Perspective

Katrine Lillerud

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 20 (2021), Issue 3, Page 337 - 358

This article provides an overview of the position of quasi-legislative measures also referred to as ‘soft law’ before and after the State aid Modernisation (SAM). The main intention of the article is to illustrate the symbiotic relationship between the revised horizontal and sectorial guidelines with the general block exemption regulation (GBER) after SAM. It demonstrates how a selected handful of horizontal and sectorial guidelines have been transformed to facilitate better use of the block exemption to enhance the Commission’s own policy objectives, in a nice hand in glove fit with the GBER to nudge States into block exempted expenditure. The empirical study compares Norway, Sweden and Finland’s use of the GBER and guidelines. It shows that the framework is now more than ever nudging aid expenditure. The micro study reveals a drastic change in use before and after SAM in the three Nordic countries – underling the nudging power of the reform. Keywords: EStAL PhD Award; soft law; guidelines; GBER; horizontal; SAM; nudging; Nordics.



Implementation of the Green Deal: journal article

Integrating Environmental Protection Requirements into the Design and Assessment of State Aid

Simone Lünenbürger, Clemens Holtmann, Juliette Delarue

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 19 (2020), Issue 4, Page 418 - 429

The Commission has announced its intention to revise a series of State aid rules (GBER and a number of guidelines) in light of the Green Deal by the end of 2021. At the same time, the Commission is examining how competition policy can be more effective to combat climate change and contribute to the protection of the environment. This article demonstrates that environmental protection requirements can and must be integrated into the definition and implementation of the Union's State aid policy, not only when it comes to environmental aid. Article 11 TFEU provides for a legal obligation on the Commission to integrate environmental protection requirements into the definition and implementation of Union policies, including State aid policy. It is shown how this obligation can be integrated into the traditional assessment scheme, notably under Article 107 (3)(c) TFEU and how it can be broken down into concrete compatibility assessment criteria. Keywords: Green Deal; environmental protection; Article 11 TFEU; State aid policy; guidelines