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Count down to clearer state aid rules
Trowers Public Insight

Count down to clearer state aid rules

On 1st July the European Commission will take a major step on its journey to modernise state aid law with the adoption of a new General Block Exemption Regulation (GBER).

The Commission is driven by its objective of ensuring permitted aid relates to market failure and that good aid incentivises the market to address that failure. It also wants clearer rules with less ‘red-tape’.  The new GBER is a key part of delivering these objectives.

The GBER reduces ‘red-tape’ as it enables public authorities to grant lawful aid without first seeking the EU Commission’s approval (providing they comply with the GBER’s relevant conditions).

The new GBER expands public bodies’ aid options by increasing a number of the financial limits for aid and importantly adding whole new categories for which aid may be given under the GBER.  

New areas include: cultural heritage, sports stadia, some types of Broadband, land reclamation, and ‘innovation clusters’ to promote research.

Some of these categories are/were previously covered by individual UK state aid schemes, these have their own conditions.  The new GBER equivalent conditions are similar but not identical. Anybody receiving or granting aid in these cross over areas after 1 July should check that they are complying with the right set of conditions.


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