State aid: Commission approves €100 million Lithuanian scheme to support businesses affected by coronavirus outbreak

The European Commission has approved a €100 million Lithuanian scheme enabling the deferred payment of social security contributions for enterprises affected by the coronavirus outbreak. The scheme was approved under the State aid Temporary Framework. The scheme will be open to businesses active in sectors affected by the emergency measures ordered by the Lithuanian government to limit the spread of the coronavirus. The aim of the measure is to address the liquidity needs of the eligible enterprises, to help them continue their activities during and after the outbreak. The Commission found that the Lithuanian scheme is in line with the conditions set out in the Temporary Framework. In particular: (i) the measure assists businesses that are particularly affected by the coronavirus outbreak and the related containment measures; (ii) the aid will be granted before 30 June 2021; and (iii) the deferred contributions will be paid no later than 31 December 2022. The Commission concluded that the measure 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 Framework. On this basis, the Commission approved the measure 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.58885 in the State aid register on the Commission’s competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved.