Aalborg subsidy likely to illegal

Aalborg subsidy likely to illegal
Published: 27 May 2010

A law designed to give Danish cement producer Aalborg Portland a tax break in lieu of increased environmental charges is expected to be ruled illegal by the EU.



Denmark is saving Aalborg Portland around DKK100m by virtue of an annual waste charge exemption, according to the head of the EU’s competition authority.



The company has been allowed the break-through legislation passed two years ago exempting cement dust from industrial waste fees. The move was designed to compensate for expenses incurred by cement companies from a recently imposed environmental tax.



That exemption would save Aalborg Portland around DKK100m kroner by 2020.

But according to the European Commission’s assessment, the law was a direct illegal advantage for Aalborg Portland, which is the nation’s only cement producer.



‘It is the view of the commission that through the granting of this exemption, the Danish cement producer is the recipient of illegal state aid,’ wrote European competition commissioner Joaquin Almuniao in his introduction to the case’s investigation.