State aid: Commission approves €47.4 million Romanian schemes to support companies active in the pig and poultry breeding sectors in the context of the coronavirus outbreak
The European Commission has approved two Romanian schemes, with a total budget of €47.4 million (approximately RON 229.4 million), to support companies active in the pig and poultry breeding sectors that are affected by the coronavirus outbreak. The schemes were approved under the State aid Temporary Framework. Under the schemes (one per sector), the budget will be allocated as follows: (i) €24.7 million (approximately RON 119.6 million) for the pig sector; and (ii) €22.7 million (approximately RON 109.8 million) for the poultry sector. Under the two schemes, public support will be provided in the form of direct grants. The aim of the schemes is to help companies active in the pig and poultry breeding sectors address their liquidity needs and continue their activities in order to ultimately secure food and feed materials for the food industry and maintain jobs. Each of the schemes is expected to benefit over 1,000 companies active in the corresponding sector. The Commission found that the Romanian schemes are in line with the conditions set out in the Temporary Framework. In particular, (i) the grants do not exceed €100,000 per beneficiary as provided by the Temporary Framework for undertakings active in the primary production of agricultural products; and (ii) the support can be granted until 31 December 2020. The Commission concluded that the measures are necessary, appropriate and proportionate to remedy a serious disturbance in the economy of a Member State, in line with Article 107(3)(b) TFEU and the conditions set out in the Temporary Framework. On this basis, the Commission approved the measures under EU State aid rules. More information on the Temporary Framework and other actions taken by the Commission to address the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic can be found here. The non-confidential version of the decision will be made available under the case number SA.58450 (pig breeding) and SA.58452 (poultry breeding) in the State aid register on the Commission’s competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved.