Depiction of State Aid

State Aid

Robust and innovative advice

State aid rules have come under the spotlight since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, with an unprecedented amount of state aid being provided by EU member states.

Our state aid experts have unrivalled expertise and experience in this area, enabling us to support you with a unique combination of economic and financial analysis.

Our team’s powerful blend of state aid expertise and cross-sectoral knowledge (from energy to broadband, financial services, post, transport, sports infrastructure, and more) ensure that you’ll benefit from our deep understanding as we work alongside you and your legal advisers.

A respected view

We have unrivalled experience assisting companies, public authorities, and government departments with economic and financial analysis across a wide range of state aid matters.

In light of our extensive experience, we have strong working relationships with senior staff at the European Commission, including the Chief Economist Team, and we have undertaken major policy studies for the Commission on state aid matters. Many individuals at Oxera have also had experience working at the Commission.

From our offices in Brussels and elsewhere in Europe, we support clients across the EU, in EU accession states, and in the UK on a range of state aid matters.

It’s a good thing, then, that we speak over 30 languages, meaning that you’ll get localised support when you need it—although whichever language we’re speaking, we have a reputation for the very best financial and economic analysis that can withstand scrutiny from the European Commission, national authorities, and courts.

How we operate

Our track record of preparing robust reports on the economic and financial aspects of cases that can be submitted to state aid authorities has helped our clients to get their cases cleared. Our reports are clear and accessible, applying proven methods rooted in economics and finance theory. Our experienced expert economists give compelling testimony to courts, tribunals, and arbitration bodies on state aid matters.

We undertake a wide range of economic and financial analysis to help clients on state aid matters, including:

  • financial due diligence to assess whether arrangements are on market terms (i.e. to apply the market economy operator principle, MEOP)
  • economic and financial analysis to help clients during a state aid investigation by the European Commission
  • economic and financial analysis to assess whether state aid is compatible with the relevant state aid rules, ranging from assessing the proportionality of the aid to analysing the impact of aid on competition and trade
  • financial analysis to assess whether aid for Services of General Economic Interest (SGEI) is in line with the relevant state aid rules
  • economic and financial analysis in state aid litigation, including preparing expert reports and expert testimony in front of the courts
  • economic and financial analysis to support damages claims arising from illegal state aid

Our experience

Does your organisation need help from our state aid experts? Below are a few examples of how we’ve helped organisations to reach a successful outcome:

  • supporting governments with the pricing of proposed debt transactions and the valuation of equity transactions to ensure compliance with the MEOP
  • advising a major multinational on a state aid investigation by the European Commission into the company’s tax rulings in an EU member state
  • study for the European Commission of the impact of aid on competition, including developing an economics framework to assess the main drivers of the impact of aid on competition
  • economic and financial analysis to assist EDF during the European Commission’s state aid investigation into aid for the construction of a nuclear plant at Hinkley Point
  • ex post evaluation of a tax measure for a French authority
  • advising governments on economic and financial analysis to support notifications of restructuring aid for companies in financial difficulty
  • advising clients across Europe on the assessment of state aid compensation for damages suffered due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • helping Valencia football club to victory in its appeal to the General Court over a European Commission decision that the club had received over €20m in unlawful state aid

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