The EU General Court upholds a Commission decision that a French ferry company received incompatible aid which must be recovered, and clarifies the definition of a service of general economic interest (SNCM)

* Article published on StateAidHub: http://stateaidhub.eu, republished in e-Competitions with the courtesy of the author. The original title of this article appears below the e-Competitions title. Authors are welcome to write an alternative article on this case/text, provided they have no relationships with a party or related third party. Article will need e-Competitions Board approval before publication.

The Need for Public Services Is Shown by Absence of Private Services* The scope of public service obligations must be proportional to the identified market failure. Introduction On 1 March 2017, the General Court dismissed the application of Societe Nationale Maritime Corse Mediterranee [SNCM] against the Commission [case T-454/13, SNCM v Commission]. The Commission had found in decision 2013/435 that SNCM received incompatible State aid that had to be recovered. SNCM carried out transport services between Marseille and Corsica. For those services it received compensation for the extra costs it incurred. The Commission considered this public service compensation [PSC] to be compatible State aid. SNCM also received compensation for additional services during the summer peak months.

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Phedon Nicolaides, The EU General Court upholds a Commission decision that a French ferry company received incompatible aid which must be recovered, and clarifies the definition of a service of general economic interest (SNCM), 1 March 2017, e-Competitions SGEI and competition law, Art. N° 89941

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