The European Commission has approved two Italian schemes, with a total budget of €20 million, to support respectively small book publishers and the music, recording and phonographic industry in the context of the coronavirus outbreak. The two schemes were approved under the State aid Temporary Framework. The public support will take the form of direct grants to small book publishers and companies active in the music, recording and phonographic sectors that have experienced a significant revenue reduction due to the coronavirus outbreak. The budget will be allocated as follows: (i) €10 million for small book publishers; and (ii) €10 million for companies active in the music, recording and phonographic industry. Both schemes aim to address the liquidity needs of the beneficiaries and to help them to continue their activities during and after the outbreak. The Commission found that the schemes are in line with the conditions set out in the Temporary Framework. In particular, the support (i) will not exceed €800,000 per company; and (ii) will be granted before 30 June 2021. 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. 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 numbers SA.58801 and SA.58847 in the State aid register on the Commission’s competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved.
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