Extracts from the press briefing by Jonathan Todd, spokesperson of Neelie Kroes, on the state of play of state aid to the automotive sector
Type: Summary of press conference
End production: 02/03/2009 First transmission: 02/03/2009
Jonathan Todd, Spokesperson of Neelie Kroes, Member of the EC in charge of Competition, explains which is the state of play in relation with the state aid schemes that the European Commission is studying. He talks about France, Spain, UK and Italy.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||General view of the press conference room
||SOUNDBITE (English) by Jonathan Todd, Spokesperson of Neelie Kroes, Member of the EC in charge of Competition: What we have managed to do and what is clarified in the letter from Luc Chatel, French Minister of State to the Minister for the Economy, Industry and Employment, is that the loans are available to car manufacturers without any such conditions being attached; in other words, the car manufacturers situated in France have access to these loans without being obliged to give undertakings they will maintain production facilities in France.
||SOUNDBITE (English) by Jonathan Todd: We had some concerns that it could be conditions attached to the state aid for the Spanish car industry along the lines of having to maintain production facilities within Spain; on the basis of the information that we have received from the Spanish authorities, there would not seem to be any such conditions attached, but of course the Commission will continue to monitor the situation.
||SOUNDBITE (English) by Jonathan Todd: I would simply remind you that, on Friday, the Commission announced that it had authorised to UK schemes for helping the real economy, one concerning loan guarantees and the other interest rates subsidies for businesses producing green products; these two schemes are available to all the sectors within the manufacturing sector, including the car industry.
||SOUNDBITE (French) by Jonathan Todd, on Italy: Following the letter from DG Competition, we have received clarifications regarding the Italian regime for helping the consumption of certain goods including cars, and we have received engagements saying that those aids are open to all products and not just for the companies that signed an protocol with the government, so there are no discriminatory aspects; this is a horizontal measure and not an state aid.