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Please be aware, as of 01 January 2021, the EU State aid information on these pages is no longer applicable in the UK and should be used for reference only.

Transparency requirements

From 1 July 2016, state aid regulations require that the details of all individual awards of support with a value of €500,000 (Industrial Sector) or €60,000 (Agricultural Sector) must be reported to the Scottish Government. We then provide this data to the European Commission (EC) using its online reporting system. The EC subsequently publish this information on a publicly available database.

The Scottish Government State Aid Team co-ordinate the process for Scottish Public Bodies. To ensure the European Commission deadlines are met, scheme administrators should complete the attached Transparency reporting form (from the top-right corner of the page) and forward details by e-mail to the transparency inbox ( within one month of the date of granting.

In response to COVID-19 the EC has agreed a Temporary Framework to assist the economies of Member States. The UK has an umbrella scheme (SA.56841 - Covid-19 Temporary Framework for UK authorities) to cover aid awarded. You must inform the State Aid Team if you intend to provide any form of support under the umbrella  scheme.  All aid awards given under this Temporary Framework must also be reported for transparency purposes regardless of the amount awarded.  A Temporary Framework Reporting Form should be completed and forwarded to the State Aid Team ( on a monthly basis.  We have produced a help-sheet which explains how to complete the Reporting Form. These are both available in the attached supporting files. 

Transparency requirements for awards made under separate schemes should be reported as normal.

How to complete the form

1. Scheme reference number - this will be in the form “SA.12345”.

2. Date of granting of aid – date of offer of grant.

3. The beneficiary identifier - receiving support. Can be located using any of the following:

  • Other registration number systems (academic registry etc)
  • Charity Registration Number
  • Company Registration Number
  • EU VAT Number

4. The beneficiary type / size of the organisation – i.e. small, medium or large.

5. The region in which the beneficiary is located (NUTS 2 level) - Full list of NUTS 2 regions.

6. Sector of activity at NACE group level (the beneficiary’s NACE code) – NACE codes are for the statistical classification of economic activities in the European community - Full list of NACE codes.

7. Aid element / amount of aid (in pounds sterling) - calculate the Euro (€) value of any aid given in pounds sterling (£) on the European Commission currency converter.

8. To get the correct conversion rate, make sure you enter the date of award into the calculator.

9. Aid instrument / Type of aid – this might be a:

  • Grant or interest rate subsidy
  • Loan
  • Repayable advances or reimbursable grant
  • Guarantee
  • Tax advantage or exemption
  • Risk finance

10. Aid objective – Provide the number of the main Block Exemption Article in the scheme used to provide cover for the grant.

11. Granting authority.

12. For schemes under Articles 16 (Regional Urban Development Aid) and Article 21 (Risk Finance Aid), name of the entrusted entity, and the names of the selected financial intermediaries.

13. All individual aid awards granted under the TF must be reported by the funding body on the EU Commission’s Transparency Awards Module (TAM). Please refer to the State Aid website for full details on the process for providing transparency information to the State Aid Team. This should be done on a monthly basis.  Please quote scheme details: SA.56841 ‘COVID-19 Temporary Framework for UK authorities’ when completing reporting forms.

Back to top