Secretariat questions compliance of state guarantee for the Tuzla 7 project with the State aid acquis

26 March 2019

On 26 March 2019, the Secretariat sent an Opening Letter to Bosnia and Herzegovina in Case ECS-10/18. It its letter, the Secretariat addressed its concerns with regard to the State aid compliance of a public guarantee granted in favour of the Export-Import Bank of China for a loan by the latter to the public utility Elektroprivreda BiH d.d. Sarajevo for the Tuzla 7 project. This guarantee has been found by the State Aid Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina not to contain elements of State aid.

The Secretariat came to the preliminary conclusion that the State Aid Council’s assessment does not comply with the State aid acquis and the guarantee for the Tuzla 7 project constitutes State aid in the sense of Article 18(1)(c) of the Treaty. These concerns have been voiced repeatedly by the Secretariat already in the past.

By sending the Opening Letter, the Secretariat initiated a preliminary procedure, the purpose of which is to give Bosnia and Herzegovina the opportunity to react to the allegation of non-compliance with Energy Community law within two months and to enable the Secretariat to establish the full background of the case.

According to Articles 7 and 17 of the Rules of Procedure for Dispute Settlement, interested parties may be granted access to the case file and may submit written observations on the present case to the Secretariat during the preliminary procedure. All requests for information on this case should be addressed to the Deputy Director and Legal Counsel at dirk.buschle@energy-community.org or +43 1 535 2222 24 and should refer to the case number ECS-10/18.