European Commission closes State aid investigation into Danish and Swedish public financing of Øresund fixed rail-road link

By 16 February 20242024 Newsletter week 07
February 16, 2024

The European Commission has concluded that the State guarantee model granted by Denmark and Sweden for the construction of the Øresund fixed rail-road link does not constitute new aid within the meaning of EU State aid rules.

The Commission has also found that part of the tax support implemented by Denmark constitutes new aid that is disproportionate and therefore not compatible with the Treaty. Denmark must now recover the incompatible aid, including interest.

In October 2014, following a complaint by a ferry company, the Commission found that Denmark and Sweden’s support to the consortium owning and operating the Øresund fixed rail-road link, Øresundsbro Konsortiet I/S, was in line with EU State aid rules.

Denmark and Sweden’s support took the form of a State guarantee on the loans taken out by the consortium to finance the link. Denmark also provided the Danish parent company of the consortium, A/S Øresund, with special tax treatment as concerns depreciation of assets and fiscal loss carry forward.

In September 2018, the General Court partially annulled the Commission’s 2014 decision on procedural grounds.

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