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Inception date: 11 Dec 2008 | Removal date: 11 Dec 2010

Loan guarantee

In response to the ongoing exceptional turbulence in world financial markets, Slovenia introduced a package of measures designed to restore stability to the financial system and to remedy a serious disturbance to the Slovenian economy. The measures in favor of the Slovenian financial institutions were announced on 22 October 2008 by the Slovenian Finance Ministry. On 11 November 2008, the Slovenian Parliament adopted the Act amending the Public Finance Act (hereinafter "Act"), which defines possible measures to maintain the stability of the national financial system.
Slovenia accepted that the notified scheme constitutes state aid within the meaning of
Article 87(1) of the EC Treaty. However, the government claimed that the measures are compatible with the common market because they are necessary to remedy a serious disturbance in the Slovenian economy pursuant to Article 87(3)(b) of the EC Treaty.
The Commission agreed with the position of Slovenia that the guarantee scheme constitutes aid to the institutions concerned pursuant to Article 87 (1) EC. Thus, "the guarantee on the newly issued debt allows the beneficiaries to refinance at advantageous conditions. This gives an economic advantage to the beneficiaries and strengthens the position of these beneficiaries compared to that of their competitors in Slovenia and other Member States and must therefore be regarded as distorting competition and affecting trade between Member States. The advantage is selective since it only benefits the beneficiaries of the scheme and is provided through State resources." (par.27 of the EC's letter to Slovenia from Brussels, 12.12.2008
C(2008) 8574 final)).
The Commission referred to its Communication on the financial crisis and concludes that the Measure complies with the conditions laid therein. Therefore, despite the measure constituting State aid pursuant to the Article 87(1) EC, it is compatible with the Common Market according to the Article 87(3)(b) EC Treaty. The Commission raises no objections against the measure at issue and authorizes it as emergency intervention in the face of the current financial crisis. (par. 29-45 of the letter).
First, second and third prolongation of the Slovenian guarantee scheme for credit
- State aid N331/2009,N651/2009 and N245/2010
On 2 June 2009, Slovenia notified a prolongation of the guarantee scheme for an additional six-month period. According to Slovenia, the continuing credit crunch justified the extension of the measure.
On 24 November 2009, Slovenia notified a second prolongation of the guarantee scheme for an additional six-month period. The decison was motivated by ongoing bank difficulties to have access to medium-term funding on the Slovenian market due to (i) the small size of the market, and (ii) due to the fact that foreign banks are still hesitant to provide medium-term funding without a State guarantee. (par. 8 of the EC's letter to Slovenia - Brussels, 17.12.2009 C(2009)10281 final.)

According to the EC, Slovenia notifiedin July 2010a third prolongation of the Scheme until 31 December 2010. No official document is publicly available yet.
The EC decided not to raise objection on the aforementioned prolongations.

A state measure in the GTA database is assessed solely in terms of the extent to which its implementation affects the extent of discrimination against foreign commercial interests. On this metric, the state aid proposed here is discriminatory.



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