State Aid Modernisation: What to expect from environmental and energy aid guidelines?

Law & Economics workshop organized by Concurrences in partnership with Hogan Lovells and MAPP.

Christof Schoser (DG COMP)

The State Aid modernisation started in 2012 with three key objectives that are the following. The first remains to support sustainable growth and contribute to the improvement of public expenditure. Second, easier approval of measures that are clearly unproblematic. Finally, focusing the enforcement in order to improve the competition internal market’s impact.


Christof Schoser emphasized that renewable energies have become a signifi cant market player that has nearly doubled its overall market share since 1990, taking the example of Denmark where the electricity generated from RES reached approximately 40% of gross electricity consumption. In particular, capital costs of most RES technologies have been decreasing fast and are forecast to decrease further in the future. However, many of the current existing support schemes are distortive and “rigid”. Indeed, they are exclusively focused on national production and mostly based on fixed feed-in tariffs. The choice and deployment of technologies has often occurred irrespective of costs. Christof Schoser noted that RES will become increasingly competi- tive over the next years. The revision of the State aid Guidelines aims to promote the integration of RES into the internal electricity market and to improve the cost-effectiveness thanks to market- oriented schemes. The new Guidelines will not apply retroactively to State aid granted under existing schemes. All market- based instruments such as tenders, certifi cates and market premiums will be introduced progressively and competition between technologies will be introduced in a cautious manner not to undermine the development of less mature technologies and investment in innovation.

Photos © Emilie Gomez

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  • DG COMP (Brussels)
  • Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton (Brussels)
  • Paris School of Economics
  • The Brattle Group (Brussels)