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Challenge to State aid for Hinkley Point C rejected by EU General Court

12/07/18, EU/Competition

By decision of 8 October 2014, the Commission approved aid which the UK was planning to implement in favour of unit C of the nuclear power station at Hinkley Point, Somerset, for the purpose of creating new capacity for the generation of nuclear energy. The Commission concluded that the aid in question is compatible with the internal market. According to the Commission, that aid is necessary in order to attain, in good time, the objective of creating new nuclear energy generating capacity, it being understood that the risk of distortion of competition is limited and that the negative effects of the aid in question are offset by its positive effects.

The Republic of Austria, supported by the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, brought an application before the General Court of the EU to annul the Commission’s decision.

The United Kingdom intervened in support of the Commission’s defence.

The hearing took place on 5 October 2017.

The General Court handed down judgment on 12 July 2018 dismissing the application.

A link to the press release is here.

The judgment is here.

The United Kingdom was represented by Aidan Robertson QC and Tim Johnston, instructed by the UK Government Legal Department.

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