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EC Approves €220 Million Spanish State Aid

 |  October 13, 2022

The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, a €220 million Spanish measure to support Cobra Instalaciones y Servicios, S.A. in the production of renewable hydrogen, with the aim of promoting the use in industrial sectors.

The measure is intended to contribute to the EU Hydrogen Strategy and the European Green Deal targets, and also help reduce dependence on Russian oil and fast-track the green transition according to the REPowerEU Plan.

Read More: Competitive Neutrality and the Role of the State in The Market: Could there be any Parallels with EU State Aid Rules?

Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said, “This €200 million measure enables Spain to support COBRA’s plans to establish new renewable hydrogen production capacities. This will contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and further greening of the European industry.”

The aid, which will be provided in the form of a direct grant, will support the construction and the installation of electrolysers in the regions of Cartagena and Castellón in Spain. The two electrolysers will have a total capacity of 205 MW, and they are expected to produce approximately 8,550 tonnes of renewable hydrogen and 6,840 tonnes of oxygen each year. The electrolysers are envisaged to be constructed in stages, with the first one operating in 2023.

European authorities approved up to 5.2 billion euros (roughly $5.2 billion) in public funding for hydrogen projects in mid-September, a move it said could unlock a further 7 billion euros of investments from the private sector.

Once completed, the project is expected to prevent the release of 47,038 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, and also, in order to maximize the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, the generated hydrogen will be produced solely with electricity produced by renewable sources.

Read More: Antitrust Chronicle – State Aid & Antitrust

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