Competition Law

STATE AID

State aid for broadband projects has to follow the Guidelines adopted by the Commission in 2013.

The European Commission reviewed in 2014 the General Block Exemption Regulation, which simplifies aid granting procedures for Member States by authorising without prior notification a range of measures fulfilling horizontal common interest objectives, including broadband.

The Commission has also published guidance on when public spending falls within or outside the scope of EU State aid control.

It is important that public funds are carefully used in the broadband sector and that the Commission ensures that State aid is complementary and does not substitute investments of market players.

The Investment Plan for Europe was launched by the Commission to unlock investments and deliver a boost to economic sectors that create jobs and raise growth. The European Fund for Strategic Investment (EFSI) drives the Investment Plan and aims at mobilising €315 billion in additional investments over 2015-2017. The EFSI was launched jointly by the EIB Group and the European Commission. Its aim is to help overcome the current investment gap in the EU by mobilising private financing for strategic investments, such as broadband infrastructures.