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Application of State aid rules for compensating the provision of services of general economic interest (SGEI)

Public Hearing - From 9:30 to 13:00 - Room VMA3 - EESC, 2 rue Van Maerlant - 1040 Brussels, Belgium

The main objective of the hearing is to brainstorm on the challenges and opportunities arising from the current State Aid rules for services of general economic interest (SGEI).

The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) will issue an own-initiative opinion on the Application of the Decision on public compensation for the provision of services of general economic interest (2012/21/UE) with the aim of contributing to the upcoming Commission review and analysing the implementation of the SGEI package. To this end, the EESC has commissioned a study on the application of SGEI rules to public compensation. Stakeholders at regional and local level, in particular publicly owned SGEI providers, have voiced serious concerns on key issues that create undue obstacles or lack of legal certainty. Furthermore, the Member States' reports do not tackle the essential issue of compatibility requirements, a matter dealt with in depth by the Communication from the Commission on the EU Framework for State aid in the form of public service compensation.

All these elements, together with the main conclusions and findings of the study, shall be thoroughly discussed during the hearing by high-level speakers from different institutions and social organisations with stakeholders across the European Union.