Commissioner for Competition Joaquín Almunia on State Aid
European Commissioner for Competition, Joaquín Almunia, whose recently announced plans on reforming State Aid marked the biggest change in a generation, shares his thoughts with Robert McLeod, editor-in-chief of MLex.
First point of discussion is how the Commissioner looks back at dealing with the economic crisis during the last four years (00:52), and the decisions he made during that time span. The conversation continues as Commissioner Almunia elaborates on his plans to rework the current usage of State Aid throughout the European Union (03:26). The Commissioner goes into detail on market distortion, providing in sustainable economic growth and the possibility to allow more aid in specific cases. Next on the agenda are the various national decision-making procedures on State Aid (07:50).
A vital part of the latest reform plans is the aim to improve the way how decisions with regard to allocating State Aid funds are made on the national level. Continuing the conversation, the Commissioner for Competition explains which sectors have his particular attention for the near future (09:43). Lastly, Mr Almunia clarifies the role of the Commission in providing in a suitable answer to the substantial amounts of State Aid employed by China and the United States, through which both EU competitors are actively subsidizing their own industries (10:40).