State aid: Commission approves €600 million Slovenian scheme to support companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak

The European Commission has approved a €600 million Slovenian scheme to support companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak. The scheme was approved under the State aid Temporary Framework adopted by the Commission on 19 March 2020, as amended on 3 April 2020 and 8 May 2020. Under the scheme, which will be open to companies active in different sectors, the support will take the form of direct grants, payment advantages and wage subsidies. The aim of the scheme is to help companies counter the liquidity shortages they face due to the coronavirus outbreak, continue their activities and preserve employment. The Commission found that the Slovenian scheme is in line with the conditions set out in the Temporary Framework. In particular, with respect to direct grants and payment advantages, the aid will not exceed €100,000 per company active in the primary production of agricultural products, €120,000 per company active in the fishery and aquaculture sector, and €800,000 per company active in other sectors as provided by the Temporary Framework. With respect to wage subsidies, (i) the aid will be granted over a period of not more than twelve months after the aid application, (ii) the subsidies will concern employees that would have otherwise been made redundant, (iii) and it is subject to the condition that the benefitting personnel is maintained in continuous employment for at least the entire period for which the aid is granted. 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.57558 in the State aid register on the Commission’s competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved.