Ryanair, upheld the appeal: "Aid to airlines for Covid is illegitimate"
The European General Court annulled the Commission's decision approving an aid measure consisting of subsidies provided by Italy to Italian airlines in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Commission - explains the Court - did not give reasons for its conclusion according to which the measure in question was not contrary to provisions of EU law other than those relating to State aid
"In October 2020, the Italian Republic notified the European Commission of an aid measure consisting of subsidies paid to certain airlines holding an Italian license through a compensation fund of 130 million" reads the note of the Court. “This measure aimed to remedy the damages suffered by eligible airlines due to travel restrictions and other confinement measures implemented in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. In accordance with one of the eligibility conditions established by the measure in question, in order to be able to benefit from it, the airlines had to apply to their employees based in Italy, as well as to the employees of third-party companies participating in their activities, a salary treatment equal to or higher than the minimum established by the national collective agreement applicable to the air transport sector, concluded by the employers' and trade union organizations considered to be the most representative at national level".
Seised with an action for annulment brought by the airline Ryanair, the Court annuls that decision for breach of the obligation to state reasons under Article 296 TFEU.