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The Impact of the Cases Marinvest and Ighoga on the Notion of the Criterion “Effect on Trade Between Member States” journal article

Theresia de la Cruz Rothenfusser

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 23 (2024), Issue 2, Page 125 - 135

This article analyses the impact of the General Court’s recent caselaw on the notion of “effect on trade between member states” under Article 107(1) TFEU. While the criterion was traditionally interpreted very broadly, the Commission changed its approach and developed criteria to restrict its application, essentially excluding cases where the effect on trade was not more than marginal. In Marinvest and Ighoga, the General Court endorses this new interpretation and provides further details for the application of the new criteria. This contribution evaluates the implications of the decisions for the interpretation of “interstate trade” on the one hand and its practical application by the Commission and Member States on the other hand. It concludes that the GC decisions contribute to a higher operability of the criteria and facilitates their application by the Member States, but ultimately cannot significantly advance legal certainty. This can only be achieved by a decision of the CJEU ruling on the admissibility of the Commission’s new interpretation and more consistent decisions going forward of both the Commission and the Courts adopting the new reading that allow the Member States more confidence in applying the criterion. Keywords: interstate trade; commission practice; Marinvest; Ighoga


The ‘Effect on Trade between the Member States’ Criterion: Is It the Right Criterion by Which the Commission’s Workload Can Be Managed? journal article

Cees Dekker

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 16 (2017), Issue 2, Page 154 - 163

On 29 April 2015, the European Commission decided on several notified measures, ruling that in none of those cases State aid was involved because, as the accompanying press release stated, they were unlikely to have a significant effect on trade between Member States. According to the press release, the decisions give additional guidance on how to determine which cases should be assessed by the Commission and which should not, to allow the Commission to focus on cases with a larger impact on the internal market. A couple of decisions in 2016 followed the same line of reasoning. This article discusses the question of how these decisions relate to the Court’s case law and the Commission’s own practice regarding the criterion ‘effect on trade between Member States’ laid down in Article 107(1) TFEU. It will also explore to what extent these decisions give actual clarity on the application of this criterion and if there is a better alternative to reduce the workload of the national authorities and the Commission. Keywords: Interstate Trade; De Minimis; Appreciable Effect; Notice on the Notion of State Aid.


The Concept of “Local Impact” in Cross-Border Regions journal article

Bob Feidt

European State Aid Law Quarterly, Volume 16 (2017), Issue 4, Page 634 - 636

On 29 April 2015, the European Commission published its decisions on several notified measures, arguing that in none of those cases State aid was involved because the measures were unlikely to have a significant effect on trade between Member States. Although the “local impact” concept, which still needs to be validated by the Court of Justice of the EU, is a welcomed initiative, it raises several questions. Some of these questions come up when applying the “local impact” concept to measures undertaken in cross-border regions. This short opinion piece underlines certain shortcomings of the concept attempting to spark a discussion that could help improve the concept. Keywords: Interstate Trade; Local Impact; Cross-Border Regions; Catchment Area.

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