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EU eyes green conditions on state aid to virus-hit firms

(EurActiv, 7 May 2020) An imminent revision of EU state aid rules for troubled firms during the COVID-19 outbreak could either uphold the bloc’s climate goals or descend into “greenwashing”, a senior EU lawmaker has warned.

The European Commission is expected to unveil its new emergency state aid rules in the coming days, allowing national governments to pump billions into ailing companies and save them from bankruptcy.

The Commission suspended its normally-strict state aid rules in mid-March, approving so far more than €1.9 trillion worth of national schemes during the pandemic.

But the EU executive is still undecided on whether to make aid conditional to climate and environmental objectives of the European Green Deal.

The revised state aid rules “is a fundamental test for the European Union’s ability to deliver on its climate ambitions” while preserving the EU single market, said Pascal Canfin, a French lawmaker who chairs the European Parliament’s environment committee.

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EurActiv, 7 May 2020: EU eyes green conditions on state aid to virus-hit firms