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State aid: Commission approves €32 million German scheme to support fishery sector in the context of Brexit

According to EU state aid rules, the European Commission approved a EUR32million German scheme to help the fishing sector affected by the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.

The scheme aims to assist German fishery companies in reorienting their operations. The scheme will help: (i) Marketing activities up up to EUR999,900 per beneficiary;(ii) adaptation of fish processing activities up up to EUR7,5million per beneficiary; (iii), investments in German-flagged fishing boats up to EUR5million per beneficiary; and (iv). Compensation to laid-off workers (called’severance payments’) up up to EUR999,000. The scheme will be in effect until 31 December 2023.

The measure will be funded by the Brexit Modification Reserve. This reserve was established to reduce the economic and social effects of Brexit. However, approval must be given under the specific provisions that govern funding from this instrument.

The scheme was evaluated by the Commission under Article 107(3)(c),of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU. This allows member states to support the development of specific economic activities or regions under some conditions. In particular, the Guidelines to examine state aid to the aquaculture and fishery sector. The scheme promotes fishing and fish processing, and does not affect trading conditions in a way that is contrary to the common interests. The Commission approved the German state aid measure on this basis.


Once confidentiality issues have been resolved, the non-confidential decision will be made public under case number SA.101585 on the State Aid Registeron Commission’s Competition Website.

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