Commission approves €35 million Italian State aid scheme to support telecommunication operators in the context of Russia’s war against Ukraine

The European Commission has approved a €35 million Italian scheme to support telecommunication operators in the context of Russia’s war against Ukraine. The scheme was approved under the State aid Temporary Crisis and Transition Framework, adopted by the Commission on 9 March 2023 and amended on 20 November 2023, to support measures in sectors which are key to accelerate the green transition and reduce fuel dependencies.

Under the scheme, the aid will take form of direct grants. The purpose of the scheme is to provide financial support to telecommunication operators in Italy to compensate the exceptional increase in electricity prices.

The Commission found that the Italian scheme is in line with the conditions set out in the Temporary Crisis and Transition Framework. In particular, the aid (i) will not exceed 50% of eligible costs and €4 million per company; (ii) will be granted on the basis of a scheme with an estimated budget; and (iii) will be granted until no later than 31 December 2024. The Commission concluded that the scheme is 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 Crisis and Transition Framework. On this basis, the Commission approved the scheme under EU State aid rules.