State Aid for German Farmers Hit by Recession

GERMANY - The European Commission has temporarily authorised Germany to grant up to €15,000 to farmers.
calendar icon 23 November 2009
clock icon 3 minute read

Under EC Treaty State aid rules, the European Commission has authorised a German scheme worth some €€100 million aimed at supporting farmers who encounter difficulties as a result of the current economic crisis.

Data provided by German authorities show that the decrease in producer prices has led to an income foregone in the German agriculture sector of some €6 billion. Aid under this new scheme can be granted until 31 December 2010 and will take the form of direct grants, interest rate subsidies, subsidised loans and subsidised guarantees. The German scheme is the first application of the amendment to the Commission's Temporary framework for state aid measures to support access to finance in the current financial and economic crisis, which introduced the possibility of granting limited amounts of aid to primary agricultural producers.

The German scheme is open to farmers in all sub-sectors of primary agricultural production, provided they were not already in difficulty on 1 July 2008 (i.e. before the beginning of the crisis). It is limited in time until 31 December 2010 and complements other crisis measures already put in place by Germany in application of the Temporary Crisis Framework.

The new German scheme meets all the conditions of the Temporary Crisis Framework as amended. In particular, the German authorities demonstrated that it is necessary, proportional and appropriate to remedy a serious disturbance in the German economy. The Commission therefore considered that the scheme can be approved under Article 87(3)(b) of the EC Treaty.

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