Nieuwsbericht | 09-02-2006
Brussels, 9 th February 2006
The European Commission has published the results of the public consultation on the State Aid Action Plan. The consultation generated a lot of interest with more than 130 submissions and showed that stakeholders broadly endorse the principles and practical proposals set out in the document. The Commission will take these submissions into account in its ongoing work in reforming state aid rules.
Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: "I am pleased to see support for state aid policy reform. The Commission is determined to assist Member States towards less and better targeted aid".
In June 2005, the Commission published its State Aid Action Plan for public consultation (see IP/05/680 and MEMO/05/195). The document outlined the guiding principles for a comprehensive reform of state aid rules over the next five years. In particular the document set out how the Commission intends to use the EC Treaty's state aid rules to encourage Member States to contribute to the Strategy for Growth and Jobs by focussing aid on improving the competitiveness of EU industry, creating sustainable jobs, ensuring social and regional cohesion, and improving public services. The Commission also made proposals to simplify and rationalise the current rules, and reduce the administrative burden, so that less aid has to be notified and decision-making is accelerated.
The European Parliament and the Economic and Social Committee were also consulted and either have issued or will shortly issue reports about state aid reform. Stakeholders generally support the proposals made in the Action Plan and agree on the guiding principles for reform.
As regards the state aid rules themselves, most comments focused on:
Other issues which were also systematically addressed in stakeholders' replies include the need to further develop the economic approach in state aid policy with a view to contribute to less and better target aid.
Reform of State Aid Policy has already begun:
The Commission will continue with its reform programme over the coming months. It aims to publish:
The results will be available via: