The EFTA Surveillance Authority approves continued and increased support to long-distance bus and passenger boat services in Norway in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic

COVID-19 pandemic: ESA approves continued and increased support to long-distance bus and passenger boat services in Norway*

The EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) has today approved a renewal of and amendments to a Norwegian scheme to compensate operators of long-distance bus and passenger boat services for losses connected to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The goal of the scheme is to compensate operators of long-distance bus and boat passenger services in Norway for significant losses in revenue caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and related containment restrictions. The scheme, which aims to ensure the continuity of commercial long-distance bus and passenger boat services, has been renewed for a period from 1 January until 30 June 2022, and the aid ceiling per undertaking has been raised.

ESA first approved the scheme in July 2020. In July 2021, the budget was increased, and the scheme prolonged until the end of December 2021.

ESA has today approved a renewal of the scheme. It has also approved an amendment to increase the amount of aid that each undertaking may receive under the scheme, from NOK 17.9 million (EUR 1.8 million) to NOK 22.9 million (EUR 2.3 million). The scheme’s overall budget remains the same.

Today’s decision is approved in line with the European Commission’s Temporary Framework for state aid measures to support the economy during the COVID-19 outbreak.

ESA’s decision can be found here.

*This is the original title of the press release. The title above has been amended in order to match the e-Competitions format. Individual authors are welcome to provide original independent commentaries on the case law. Articles are subject to approval by the Board of e-Competitions Bulletin before publication based on the Editorial Policy (click here).

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EFTA Surveillance Authority, The EFTA Surveillance Authority approves continued and increased support to long-distance bus and passenger boat services in Norway in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, 25 January 2022, e-Competitions January 2022, Art. N° 104834

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