The European Commission is scrutinising more than one hundred million euros in state support for the recent expansion of German carmaker Audi’s base in the city of Győr, in western Hungary, daily Magyar Nemzet said. The commission confirmed to the paper that is reviewing whether the support conforms to rules on state aid, which the commission’s website shows is 133.3 million euros.
The economy ministry told the paper that the government had approved “44.96 billion forints (EUR 150.03m) in support, which at current value is equivalent to 39.95 billion forints (EUR 133.3m)”. The paper noted the government had initially proposed support of 11.2 billion forints, a quarter of the amount.
The European Commission has opened a formal investigation under EC Treaty state aid rules into Hungarian aid for an investment project of Audi Hungaria Motor Kft. in its existing plant in Győr. Hungary intends to subsidise the installation of new high-tech engine production lines for new generation engines and engine components for a wide range of passenger car models of the Volkswagen-Porsche Group. At this stage, the Commission’s preliminary view is that the market shares of the Volkswagen-Porsche Group exceed the limits established by the Commission’s regional aid guidelines (see IP/05/1653 ), and in particular the thresholds of the rules for large investment projects. The opening of an in-depth investigation gives interested third parties the possibility to comment on the proposed measure. It does not prejudge the outcome of the procedure. (EC – europa.eu)
Audi launched production at the 900-million-euro expansion at its base in Gyor in 2013. The added capacity is a factor in Hungary’s growing industrial output and economic growth.
via hungarymatters.hu and europa.eu photo: Audi factory in Győr (Gergely Botár – kormany.hu /MTI)