No field of law changes as quickly as state aid law. A basic condition of state aid is that it is prohibited for governmental institutions to provide aid to economic undertakings unless the provision of such aid is permissible under an exception. In general, such an exception exists if the aid is intended for a service of general economic interest. State aid can take many forms and is not limited to the award of subsidies. State aid can also encompass fiscal exemptions, the sale of property to football clubs below market value or the provision of loans and guarantees by governmental institutions.
On 12 January 2021, Allard Knook, Martijn Koopal and Wouter Amersfoort held a PwC webcast on ‘State aid and the increasing need for cooperation between government and industry’. During the webcast, Allard Knook discussed the latest state of affairs regarding European and Dutch state aid developments since the outbreak of the Covid pandemic. Allard Knook spoke, among other things, about the conditions under which aid can be obtained and how over the course of months these conditions have been extended and, in some cases, relaxed. Wouter Amersfoort spoke about the hybrid government. This is the trend marked by a coming together of public and private entities that work together to shape social change. Martijn Koopal addressed the question of whether, and to what extent, the new relationship between government and business affects the way businesses are run. You can find the link to the webcast to the left. The slides are also available for download.
PwC can help you navigate through the legal framework and intricacies of state aid. With our experts on hand, you are ensured of the latest insights into the field of state aid law. With our worldwide network, we can offer our services at a local level. These include the following:
The assessment of the legality of government financing (including in the fields of state aid, subsidy law, procurement law and European Union law);
The realisation of subsidy programmes and other forms of government financing, such as funds;
The design of joint ventures between government and business, triple helix (government, the business sector and universities) or hybrid governments;
Exploring possibilities to make use of subsidy programmes or other forms of state aid on a national or European level.
With our deep-rooted knowledge of different sectors, we can assist governmental institutions by providing the proper tools to succeed within a short time span. We ensure both efficiency as well as legality, irrespective of whether the applicable tool entails government loans or guarantees, specific compensation frameworks or other financial measures.
We assist both economic undertakings and sectors in gaining access to state aid measures and other forms of public financing. This is possible since we are often involved in their very design.
PwC has the largest state aid section within the Netherlands. The national state aid network, which brings academic knowledge and expertise with practicing lawyers together, is housed within this section. The national state aid network originated from the Utrecht law department. Within PwC's European network, all state aid expertise has been brought together in the State Aid Centre of Excellence.