ANNOUNCEMENT 23 Jul 2020
On 23 July 2020, the European Commission approved the support scheme notified by the Greek authorities to support primary livestock producers affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.
NUMBER OF INTERVENTIONS
Letter to the Member State – State Aid SA. 58029 (2020/N) – GR- COVID-19: ‘State aid support to primary sector farmers, producers and open-air markets’ sellers under the Temporary Framework for State aid measures to support the economy in the current COVID-19 outbreak’, State Aid SA. 58048 (2020/N) – GR- COVID-19: ‘State aid support to the sheep and goat farming primary sector under the Temporary Framework for State aid measures to support the economy in the current COVID-19 outbreak’ and State Aid SA. 58069 (2020/N) – GR- COVID-19: ‘State aid support to the asparagus primary production sector the under the Temporary Framework for State aid measures to support the economy in the current COVID-19 outbreak’. Available at: https://ec.europa.eu/competition/state_aid/cases1/202030/287192_2175840_31_2.pdf
SA.58048 Support of the sheep and goat farming primary sector on the basis of the COVID 19 Temporary Framework. Available at: https://ec.europa.eu/competition/elojade/isef/case_details.cfm?proc_code=3_SA_58048
In July 2020, the Greek authorities notified the European Commission of their intention of establishing an aid scheme to support sheep and goat farming primary sector within the context of the COVID-19 outbreak. The Commission approved the scheme on 23 July 2020 and the scheme will be available until 31 December 2020. Notably, on the same day, the EU Commission also approved two other schemes, see related state act.
The beneficiaries of the support scheme are primary livestock producers in the sheep and goat farming sector. The estimated budget of the scheme is EUR 14.8 million (USD 17.2 million) and the support scheme provides aid in the form of direct grants through the national budget.
Concerning all the three measures, the European Commission noted that: “The measures are liable to distort competition since they strengthen the competitive position of their beneficiaries. They also affect trade between Member States, since those beneficiaries are active in sectors in which intra Union trade exists.”
However, the Commission approved the state aid: "on the grounds that it is compatible with the internal market pursuant to Article 107(3)(b) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.” concluding that: “the measure is necessary, appropriate and proportionate to remedy a serious disturbance in the economy of a Member State”.
The state aid is approved under the Temporary Framework for State aid measures. The European Commission adoption of a Temporary Framework under the State Aid rules of the European Union was adopted on 19 March, see related state act.