Econostrum | Economic News in the Mediterranean

Italy will be able to support the agriculture and fisheries sectors with €1.2 billion

Written by Eric Apim on Thursday, May 19th 2022 à 15:30 | Read 347 times

The fishermen will benefit from an aid of the Italian State (photo: F.Dubessy)
The fishermen will benefit from an aid of the Italian State (photo: F.Dubessy)
ITALY. On Wednesday 18 May 2022, the European Commission authorised the Italian State to implement a €1.2 billion framework scheme to support the agriculture, forestry, fisheries and aquaculture sectors. These professionals are suffering from the geopolitical crisis caused by Russia's invasion of Ukraine and related sanctions. They are also suffering from rising input costs, particularly with the increase in the price of electricity, feed and fuel.

The European Commission's agreement is based on its Temporary Crisis Framework for State aid adopted on 23 March 2022. The Commission considers that the Italian scheme complies with the conditions set out in this exception, namely that the aid will not exceed €35 000 per active beneficiary in the primary agricultural production, fisheries and aquaculture sectors and €400 000 in all other sectors. Moreover, this support can only be granted until 31 December 2022.

The European Commission therefore considers it "necessary, appropriate and proportionate to remedy a serious disturbance in the economy of a Member State", as stated in a press release.

From subsidy to exemption from social security contributions

"We remain in solidarity with Ukraine and its people. At the same time, we continue to work closely with Member States to ensure that national support measures can be put in place in a timely, coordinated and effective manner, while preserving a level playing field in the single market," commented Margrethe Vestager, executive vice-president of the European Commission responsible for competition policy.

Beneficiaries of the Italian framework scheme will be able to receive direct subsidies, tax or payment benefits, repayable advances and be granted a reduction or exemption from paying social security contributions.

Russian-controlled entities subject to sanctions will be excluded from the scope of these measures.

A few days ago, the European Commission had also approved, in the same framework, a support scheme provided by France to farms and fish farms financially affected by the conflict between Ukraine and Russia. These subsidies, totalling €400 million, are intended to cover part of the increase in animal feed costs for these farms.

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