State aid: Commission approves increase in public support for electric buses and charging infrastructure in Germany

The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, a budget increase of €300 million for an existing public support scheme for the purchase of electric buses and related recharging infrastructure by public transport operators in Germany. The German scheme was originally approved by the Commission under EU State aid rules in 2018. Following two increases approved in 2018 and 2019 respectively and the further increase approved today, the scheme will have an overall budget of €650 million. The new budget increase is expected to lead to additional CO2 reductions (around 45 000 tonnes of CO2 equivalents per year), in line with the EU’s climate and environmental objectives and the goals set by the European Green Deal. The amendment will also contribute to improving air quality, notably by further reducing nitrogen oxides (NOx) by up to around 170 tonnes per year. On this basis, the Commission approved the amendment of the scheme under EU State aid rules, in particular its 2014 Guidelines on State Aid for Environmental Protection and Energy. More information will be available on the Commission’s competition website in the public case register under the case number SA.55977 once any confidentiality issues have been resolved.