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Regional aid guidelines

Overall state of play

Guidelines: adopted; 19 April 2021 (OJ C 153, 29.4.2021, p. 1-46)

State of play, main conclusions, outlook

The regional aid Guidelines set out the rules under which Member States can grant State aid to companies to support the economic development of disadvantaged areas in the EU, while ensuring a level playing field between Member States. The revised guidelines entered into force on 1 January 2022.

The new guidelines aim to enable Member States to support the least favoured European regions in catching up and to reduce disparities in terms of economic well-being, income and unemployment. Under the guidelines, the possibilities for Member States to support regions facing transition or structural challenges such as depopulation have been increased, so that the guidelines fully contribute to the green and digital transitions while ensuring a level playing field between Member States.

Estimated savings and benefits

The revised guidelines include a number of targeted adjustments to simplify and reflect experience gained from the application of the previous rules, as well as to reflect new policy priorities related to the European Green Deal and the European Industrial and Digital Strategies.

The changes also include a general simplification of the structure of the guidelines, as well as a clarification of some of the definitions and terminology, and some targeted changes in light of the European Green Deal and the EU's Industrial and Digital Strategies.