EC approves Greek aid scheme worth €1.36bn

Shiva Singh
Waving EU flag on a euro money - background

Belgium, (Brussels Morning Newspaper) The European Commission has approved the Greek state aid scheme worth 1.36 billion euros to support energy-intensive companies.

In a statement released on Tuesday, the EC pointed out that Athens will partially compensate the companies in question for the growth of energy prices caused by the EU’s green push.

The compensation will focus on price rises resulting from new costs under the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) incurred in the period between 2021 and 2030.

The EC pointed out that “the support measure is aimed at reducing the risk of ‘carbon leakage’, where companies relocate their production to countries outside the EU with less ambitious climate policies, resulting in increased greenhouse gas emissions globally.”

The body noted that energy-intensive sectors that operate under EU rules “are particularly exposed to international competition” and stressed that the aid scheme will help companies at risk of carbon leakage.

Under the scheme, “compensation will be granted to eligible companies through a partial refund of the indirect emission costs incurred in the previous year,” the EC pointed out and added, “the final payment will be made in 2031.”

Keeping production in the EU

Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for Competition, noted that the scheme “enables Greece to reduce the risk that energy-intensive companies move their activities to locations outside the EU with less ambitious climate policies.”

She stressed that the scheme is in line with the EU’s green push and incentivizes “a cost-effective decarbonization of Greece’s economy,” concluding that the aid measure will keep competition distortions to the minimum.

The EC pointed out that the amount of aid per beneficiary will be based on efficiency to encourage recipients to save energy.

To qualify, companies will have to implement energy efficiency recommendations, have at least 30% of renewables in their energy mix or invest at least half of the aid in projects aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Beneficiaries will have to meet at least one of the three goals in three years after receiving the aid.

The EC noted that the measure is in line with EU rules as planned aid is appropriate and necessary to help energy-intensive companies deal with energy price hikes caused by EU rules.

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Shiva is a professional digital marketer who covers the latest updates in the tech industry from across the globe. With an experience of over 5 years in the world of Information Technology, he likes to keep up with every major development and writes fact-based pieces backed by in-depth research.