On 16 January 2018, the General Court of the European Union rejected EDF’s appeal against the decision by the European Commission on 22 July 2015 qualifying as state aid the tax treatment for provisions created between 1987 and 1996 for the renewal of the structures of the Réseau d’Alimentation Générale (“RAG”), and ordering that it be recovered by the French State.
Following on from this decision by the Commission, on 13 October 2015, EDF repaid €1.383 billion, corresponding to the amount of state aid, including interest. ENEDIS and RTE contributed their respective shares.
In its ruling, the General Court confirmed the European Commission’s decision of 22 July 2015 qualifying as state aid the tax treatment for provisions created for updating the RAG. As EDF had already arranged to repay €1.383 billion on 13 October 2015, the implementation of this ruling does not imply any additional payment.
The Commission had already adopted an initial decision to this end on 16 December 2003. This decision had been overruled by the Court of Justice of the European Union in a ruling on 5 June 2012, which upheld a ruling by the General Court of the European Union dated 15 December 2009. Following on from this ruling, the Commission reopened an inquiry into state aid, at the end of which it adopted the decision of 22 July 2015 which was challenged by EDF.
EDF acknowledges this decision and will consider the opportunity to submit an appeal to the Court of Justice of the European Union.
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