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State Aid

ESA: Leangbukten Båtforenings Andelslag does not receive state aid




Based on a complaint, the EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) has looked into two agreements between the municipality of Asker and Leangbukten Båtforenings Andelslag (LBA) and concluded that they do not amount to state aid within the meaning of the EEA Agreement.  

“ESA considers this to be a purely local operation that is unlikely to affect trade between EEA States. When that is the case, ESA has no say in how national or local authorities use public funds,” says ESA's President Bente Angell-Hansen.   

In the complaint from Asker Marina AS (AM) against LBA in May 2018, AM argued that LBA had received unlawful state aid from the municipality of Asker through two agreements. The first agreement concerns a 25-year lease contract to land and sea areas operated by LBA. AM alleged that LBA did not pay remuneration corresponding to market terms. In the second agreement, LBA was granted the right to develop the sea area for no remuneration.

ESA concludes that the measures have a purely local impact, and are thus not liable to affect trade between EEA States. Therefore, they do not constitute state aid within the meaning of Article 61(1) in the EEA Agreement. The decision is part of ESA's effort to focus state aid control on bigger cases that are more likely to impact competition in the internal market.


EEA State aid rules are fundamental to ensure that all companies can compete on an equal footing. Public support to individual companies is in principle prohibited unless it can be justified. However, if state support is granted to an activity which has a purely local impact, there may not be an effect on intra-EEA trade, e.g. where the beneficiary supplies goods or services to a limited area within an EEA State and is unlikely to attract customers from other EEA States. Moreover, the measure should have no – or at most marginal – foreseeable effects on cross-border investments in the sector or the establishment of firms within the EEA.

For further information, please contact:

Øystein Solvang 
Head of Communications
tel. +32 2 286 18 66
mob. +32 490 57 63 53

Other EEA Institutions

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