ANNOUNCED AS TEMPORARYYes
According to France, the aim of the scheme is to "[...] (a) optimize the contribution of the French airport network to a balanced development of all regions of the French territory; (b) facilitate the development of European trans-regional air transport by creating or strengthening regional airport access points; (c) promoting regional economic development through the development of airports where the demand for additional air services may be demonstrated without significant impairment of competition and where an economic calculation can be made to justify the relevance of new investments; (d) improve the use of existing and under-utilized infrastructure by improving the quality of the airports, particularly in terms of safety installations, upgrading and comfort for customers; (e) maintaining the opening to commercial air traffic of recognized platforms as essential to the accessibility of the region; (f) rationalize airport provision by preventing new lead to the development of overcapacity. [...] the measure will be in effect from 4 April 2015 until 3 April 2024. The maximum budget allocated for the scheme is 225 million EUR with an annual budget of approximately 25 million EUR." (translated from para. 4, 6 and 7 letter from the EC to France, Brussels 15.06.2015)
Based on the findings of the European Commission, "[...] The Commission finds that airports compete for the management of airport infrastructures, including at local and regional airports. Public funding of airport investment can therefore distort competition in the markets for airport infrastructure operations. The Commission also notes that financial support for French airports is liable to affect the economy of the air transport sector in Europe, since the aid paid may change the strategic choices of air carriers to provide service to airports in other Member States. Finally, the Commission notes that airport aids are liable to alter the relative market share of air transport to the detriment of other substitutable means of transport (eg. road or rail) and thus affect transport operators capable of offering competing services in the single market. Accordingly, public financing of airports offering services from these airports is likely to affect trade between Member States." (translated from para. 28 letter from the EC to the France, Brussels 15.06.2015)
In the GTA database the determination of whether a policy instrument discriminates against foreign commercial interests turns on whether it creates or alters the relative treatment of domestic firms versus foreign commercial interests. On this metric, the state aid proposed here is discriminatory because the state aid is not available to competing firms outside of the implementing jurisdiction.
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