The EU General Court partly annuls a Commission decision for misapplying the market economy operator test by failing to establish a causal link between the obligations assumed by an infrastructure operator and the costs it bears (Germanwings)

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What Costs Are Charged by Public Authorities when they Act as Market Operators?* Fees charged by operators to users of infrastructure must cover all relevant costs. The relevant costs are those which are causally linked to the agreements between users and operators. Introduction The rules in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union are neutral in their treatment of private or state-owned companies [Article 345 TFEU]. This means that companies cannot enjoy any advantage by the mere fact that they are owned by the state. It also means that the EU Treaty does not prohibit public authorities from buying companies or investing in companies. For this reason the Commission had to come up with the means of detecting when state ownership or state investments would favour some

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