ANNOUNCEMENT 21 Jun 2011In June 2011, the government of France announced a change in private-sector financial support.
NUMBER OF INTERVENTIONS
Official Journal of the European Union, SA.32600 (2011/N) - FR - Aide ? la restructuration de SeaFrance;
SA.31331 (2011/NN) - Prorogation de la convention de tr?sorerie consentie
par la SNCF ? SeaFrance;
SA.31252 (2010/NN) - Financement accord? ? SeaFrance par la SNCF en vue
de la lev?e de l'option sur le navire le SeaFrance Berlioz.
On 22 June 2011 the Commission contacted the French authorities concerning their intention to provide state aid for restructuring for SeaFrance. SeaFrance is a French anonym society, owned 100 % by SNCF Participations S.A., holding of SNCF (Société nationale des chemins de fer français). SeaFrance provides maritime transport services.
The restructuration plan in favour of SeaFrance will amount 223 million EUR.
According to the Commission, this measure can threaten or distort the competition between the member states. (par. 40 of the letter from the EC to France - Brussels, 22.06.2011 C(2011) 4429 final).
The Commission concluded that the measure is not compatible with Art. 107 par 3 c) TFEU for the following reasons:
1) The plan involved an own contribution by SeaFrance to therestructuring costs of less than 5%, instead of the 50% required by EUrules.
2) The Comission emits doubts on the long term viability of the restructuration scheme.
3) Compensatory measures in order to limit negative effects on trade are insufficient.
(par. 79-111 of the letter)
A state measure in the GTA database is assessed solely in terms of theextent to which its implementation affects the extent of discriminationagainst foreign commercial interests. On this metric, the state aidproposed here is discriminatory.