Analysis by the European Commission has revealed that Belgium is among the EU countries that provided the least state aid in relation to their GDP.
In 2020, the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic, Belgium provided state aid equivalent to 0.4% of its GDP to companies affected by the consequences of the crisis. Only Ireland, Sweden and Finland offered even less state aid relative to their GDP.
The Commission’s scoreboard covered all state aid provided by EU countries in 2020. In the European internal market, such support is subject to strict rules in order to guarantee a level playing field at all times. Aid measures must therefore be submitted to the Commission for approval.
The 27 EU countries and the United Kingdom passed on €384.33 billion in state aid measures in 2020. Of this, €227.97 billion was earmarked for measures in the context of the Covid-19 crisis.
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In relation to their GDP, Poland (3.8%) and Greece (3.6%) provided the most public support for companies affected by the crisis. Ireland and Sweden (both 0.2%) were the most economical, followed by Finland (0.3%), Belgium (0.4%) and the Netherlands (0.58%).
Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager pointed out that state aid policy remains a cornerstone of the internal market. State aid for non-Covid-related purposes in 2020 was in line with previous years, despite the crisis.