Judgment of the Court of First Instance in Case Olympiaki Aeroporia Ypiresies/EC (T-268/06) on State aid
End production: 25/06/2008 First transmission: 25/06/2008
The Court of First Instance of the EC annulled, in part, the Commission's decision declaring incompatible with the Common market certain aid paid to Olympiaki Aeroporia Ypiresies for losses connected with the events of 11 September 2001.
The Court of First Instance notes that the Commission’s decision itself states that not only the terrorist attacks but also the closure of American airspace (11-14 September 2001) was an exceptional occurrence. Consequently, aid compensating loss which arose after 14 September 2001 but had a direct causal connection with the exceptional occurrence and was exactly calculated should be held to be compatible with the common market. Furthermore, the existence of a direct connection between the exceptional occurrence and the damage caused does not presuppose that they occurred at the same time. The Court of First Instance annuls the Commission’s decision in so far as it concerns the compensation for the cancellation, on 15 September 2001, of the flight to Toronto, on the ground that the evidence on which the Community institution relied in order to substantiate the lack of a causal connection did not justify its determination. Further, the Court of First Instance annuls for failure to state reasons, the Commission’s decision in so far as it concerns the losses suffered by Olympiaki, first, on its network apart from the North Atlantic and Israel (about 1 212 000 Euros) and, second, lost revenue amounting to about 500 000 Euros in respect of the carriage of goods and other costs incurred.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||General atmosphere in the court room
||Judges of the Court of First Instance of the EC entering the court room
||Maria Eugénia Martins de Nazaré Ribeiro, Judge at the Court of First Instance of the EC, (in FRENCH) opening the hearing;
Savvas S. Papasavvas, Judge at the Court of First Instance of the EC, (in GREEK) reading the judgement in Case Olympiaki Aeroporia Ypiresies/EC (T-268/06); saying that hereby, the Court of First Instance:
one, annuls Articles 1 and 2 of Commission Decision C (2006) 1580 final of 26 April 2006 concerning a State aid scheme C 39/2003 (ex NN 119/2002) which the Hellenic Republic implemented in favour of airlines following losses suffered between 11 and 14 September 2001, in so far as they declare incompatible with the common market aid granted to Olympiaki Aeroporia Ypiresies AE, first, for losses due to the cancellation of the flight to Canada on 15 September 2001, secondly, for losses in respect of its network apart from the North Atlantic and Israel and, thirdly, for revenue lost in respect of carriage of goods, the costs of destruction of sensitive goods, the costs of additional security checks on goods, the costs connected with additional hours worked by staff and the costs connected with additional emergency security measures;
two, annuls Article 4 of Decision C (2006) 1580 final in so far as it orders the aid mentioned in the preceding paragraph to be recovered;
three, dismisses the remainder of the action;
and four, orders each party to bear its own costs;