New UK Subsidies System announced
Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng has announced a new subsidy control system for the UK, following Brexit. This is aimed at providing more flexible and tailored support to businesses to encourage job creation and growth across the UK, and replaces the EU’s state aid regime.
A set of UK wide principles will guide decisions around subsidies being made by local authorities, public bodies and the devolved administrations. It is intended that these principles will protect against wasteful spending, whilst enabling subsidies to support business growth and innovation, with standardised subsidy levels available across the whole UK. The aim is therefore for parity across the UK’s internal market.
A period of consultation, which closes on the 31st March 2021, will seek views from businesses and public authorities on a number of areas, including:
- whether the UK should apply its own additional principles on subsidy control, as well as those set out in the UK-EU Trade and Co-operation Agreement
- how best to ensure transparency across the system
- the possible roles and responsibilities of the independent body that will oversee the new system
- how this independent body could have some role in supporting enforcement of the principles, alongside normal judicial review standards
- how the system could seek to introduce exemptions consistent with our international obligations, such as ensuring subsidies of low value, those given to support natural disaster relief or in response to global economic emergencies
More details around the consultation are here.
We’ll let you know more once the results of the consultation are announced.
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