State aid: Commission approves extension of Hungarian scheme to support research and development and production of coronavirus-relevant products

The European Commission has approved an extension of a Hungarian aid scheme to support research and development (R&D) and investments into the production of products that are relevant to the coronavirus outbreak, approved on 10 August 2020 under case number SA.58202. This extension makes available an additional budget of around €100 million (HUF 35 billion) that will be co-financed by the European Structural and Investment Funds, for a total budget of around €243 million (HUF 85 billion) including the initial scheme. The extended measure will be open to all companies, while under the initial scheme only enterprises with more than 9 and less than 5000 workers are eligible. The aim of the extended scheme is to further enhance and accelerate the development and the production of products directly relevant to the coronavirus outbreak, including vaccines, hospital and medical equipment and medicinal products, as well as the development of innovative processes for an efficient production of such products. The public support will take the form of direct grants that may cover a significant share of the necessary R&D and investment costs. The Commission concluded that the extended scheme remains necessary, appropriate and proportionate to fight the health crisis, in line with Article 107(3)(c) TFEU and with 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.58718 in the State aid register on the Commission’s competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved.