New Commission Notice on the enforcement of State aid rules by national courts
The European Commission has issued a new Notice on the enforcement of State aid rules by national courts, which replaces the 2009 Enforcement Notice and is intended to provide guidance to courts and tribunals of the Member States within the meaning of Article 267 TFEU and to encourage closer cooperation between the Commission and national courts by laying down all the available tools of cooperation among them.
This Enforcement Notice builds on the Commission’s Study on the enforcement of State aid rules and decisions by national courts in 28 Member States, published in 2019. The Enforcement Study revealed that the number of State aid cases addressed to national courts increased between 2007 and 2017 but that, in spite of this increase, national courts only awarded remedies on rare occasions, claims for damages represented a small minority of cases, and the means of cooperation between the Commission and national courts (introduced by the 2009 Enforcement Notice and by the 2015 Procedural Regulation) were not widely used.
The new Enforcement Notice focuses mainly on private enforcement, incorporating the more recent case law of the General Court and the Court of Justice and replacing the 2009 Enforcement Notice. The aspects related to public enforcement are addressed by the 2019 Recovery Notice).
The new version of the text includes a diversified set of dedicated tools to encourage knowledge sharing and closer cooperation of national courts with the Commission, such as requests for information, opinions and amicus curiae observations
The Enforcement Notice is available here.
An Op-Ed on it by Fernando Pastor-Merchante will be published soon on EU Law Live.