Germany Takes Legal Action Against Decision by European Commission that Cleared EEG 2012 to Clarify State Aid Requirements

On 2 February 2015 the German government took legal action against a decision by the European Commission of 25 November 2014. The decision qualified the Renewable Energy Sources Act 2012 (EEG 2012) as state aid, but for the most part found it to be in line with EU state aid rules. The government is seeking clarification whether the EEG 2012 constitutes state aid as well as on the interpretation of the term state aid under European law as such. The amendment of the EEG 2012, the EEG 2014 that has been in force since 1 August 2014 and was approved by the Commission in July 2014, is not part of the legal action.

The German government does not consider the EEG 2012 to be a form of state aid. It already challenged the decision by the European Commission to open an in-depth investigation into the EEG 2012 in December 2013. As the Commission, again qualified the EEG 2012 as state aid (although mostly in line with EU law) in the November 2014 decision, the government took legal action to get clarification in the matter and general guidance as to the interpretation of the term state aid under European law.

The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy pointed out that proceedings take approximately four years.

Source: Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy

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