State aid: guidance

Guidance to help public sector bodies to understand and comply with state aid rules.

Please be aware, as of 01 January 2021, the EU State aid information on these pages is no longer applicable in the UK and should be used for reference only.

Sectoral restrictions

There are various guidelines relating to granting aid in some sectors which may be in overcapacity or where there may be specific industry issues meaning that some or all activity cannot be assisted using the more common state aid frameworks and guidelines.

In some of these areas the European Commission has either prohibited state aid (other than under specific conditions) or produced specialist guidelines. These take precedence over any other state aid rules. The ‘sensitive’ sectors are as follows:

There are specific rules attached to various aspects of the Transport sector, as follows:

The Agriculture and Fisheries sectors have their own Frameworks and Guidelines relating to public sector intervention in those sectors.

We have produced three documents to provide advice on prohibitions or restrictions on state aid that can be awarded in certain sectors of industry. Download these from the 'Supporting files' section above.

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