ANNOUNCEMENT 27 Apr 2022

In April 2022, the European Commission approved a French financial support scheme to finance RDI projects until December 2023.

NUMBER OF INTERVENTIONS

2

  • 2 harmful
  • 0 neutral
  • 0 liberalising

SOURCE

SA.102230 French notified scheme for R&D&I aid as part of the “France 2030” recovery program. Available at:
https://ec.europa.eu/competition/elojade/isef/case_details.cfm?proc_code=3_SA_102230

European Commission's Decision. "Objet: Régime d’aide SA.102230 (2022/N) – France. Régime cadre notifié relatif aux aides à la recherche, au développement et à l’innovation (RDI) dans le cadre de la relance".
https://ec.europa.eu/competition/state_aid/cases1/202222/SA_102230_0019F080-0000-C560-BE9D-E813792CFAB6_54_1.pdf

European Commission. Press release. "State aid: Commission approves €700 million French scheme to support research, development and innovation projects across all sectors". 27/04/2022. Available at:
https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_22_2697

Inception date: 27 Apr 2022 | Removal date: 31 Dec 2023

Financial grant

On 27 April 2022, the European Commission approved a EUR 700 million (USD 738 million) financial support scheme from France. The scheme provides support in the form of, among others, financial grants. It aims to finance companies' research, development and innovation activities. The scheme will be open until 31 December 2023.

The scheme is open to companies from all sectors and all sizes, as long as they undertake one of the following eligible projects: fundamental research, industrial research, experimental development or feasibility studies. The aid intensity can be up to 100% depending on the project. The scheme is adopted under the France 2030 investment plan and will be implemented by the Ministry of Economy and Finance. 

Notably, the scheme also foresees support in the form of repayable advances and subsidised loans (see related intervention).

In this context, the European Commission's Decision noted: "The measure is likely to distort competition as it reinforces the competitive position of a firm relative to its competitors. This is the case since the aid granted under this scheme will enable the beneficiaries to carry out their research and innovation activities at a lower cost and more quickly and, consequently, obtaining a competitive advantage over their competitors" (own translation).

Regardless, the Commission approved the state aid without raising objections, concluding that the scheme “is compatible with the internal market pursuant to Article 107(3)(c) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union”.

AFFECTED SECTORS

 
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AFFECTED PRODUCTS

 
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Inception date: 27 Apr 2022 | Removal date: 31 Dec 2023

State loan

On 27 April 2022, the European Commission approved a EUR 700 million (USD 738 million) financial support scheme from France. The scheme provides support in the form of, among others, repayable advances and subsidised loans. It aims to finance companies' research, development and innovation activities. The scheme will be open until 31 December 2023.

The scheme is open to companies from all sectors and all sizes, as long as they undertake one of the following eligible projects: fundamental research, industrial research, experimental development or feasibility studies. The aid intensity can be up to 100% depending on the project. The scheme is adopted under the France 2030 investment plan and will be implemented by the Ministry of Economy and Finance. 

Notably, the scheme also foresees support in the form of direct grants (see related intervention).

In this context, the European Commission's Decision noted: "The measure is likely to distort competition as it reinforces the competitive position of a firm relative to its competitors. This is the case since the aid granted under this scheme will enable the beneficiaries to carry out their research and innovation activities at a lower cost and more quickly and, consequently, obtaining a competitive advantage over their competitors" (own translation).

Regardless, the Commission approved the state aid without raising objections, concluding that the scheme “is compatible with the internal market pursuant to Article 107(3)(c) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union”.

 
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