26 November 2021


On 24 November, the European Commission approved, under EU State aid rules, a €2.5 million Spanish scheme to support the purchase of intermodal road semi-trailers suitable for use on rail. The scheme will be partly funded by the Recovery and Resilience Facility (‘RRF'), following the Commission's positive assessment of the Spanish Recovery and Resilience Plan and its adoption by Council.

Under the scheme, the support will take the form of direct grants. It will finance part of the investment costs required for the purchase of intermodal semi-trailers, which are significantly higher than the costs of conventional road units for direct road transport. The aim of the measure is to contribute to the development of combined road and rail transport and to promote the gradual shift from road to rail.

The Commission assessed the measure under EU State aid rules and found that the scheme is necessary and proportionate to promote the use of intermodal transport, which is less polluting than road transport and reduces road congestion. The measure will therefore be beneficial both for the environment and for mobility. Furthermore, the Commission found that the aid will have an 'incentive effect' as the beneficiaries would not carry out the investments in the absence of the public support.

The Commission therefore concluded that the measure will contribute to transport coordination and facilitate the shift of freight transport from road to rail in line with the EU policy objectives, without unduly distorting competition in the Single Market. On this basis, the Commission approved the scheme under EU State aid rules. The non-confidential version of the decision will be made available under the case number SA.63113 in the State aid register on the Commission's competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved.

Source: European Commission