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De minimis aid for the fisheries sector

This regulation replaces the fisheries sector rules on de minimis aid in Commission Regulation (EC) No 1860/2004, which had established those rules for the agriculture and fisheries sectors.


Commission Regulation (EC) No 875/2007 of 24 July 2007 on the application of Articles 87 and 88 of the EC Treaty to de minimis aid in the fisheries sector and amending Regulation (EC) No 1860/2004.


Article 87(1) of the Treaty establishing the European Community stipulates that, save as otherwise provided in the Treaty, State aid in any form whatsoever is incompatible with the common market, as it may distort competition.

However, Article 2 of Council Regulation (EC) No 994/98 states that the Commission may decide that certain aids do not meet all the criteria of Article 87. These aids are therefore exempted from the notification procedure.

Therefore, in the same way that the Commission in 2001 adopted the general de minimis Regulation (Commission Regulation (EC) No 69/2001) for all economic sectors other than the transport, agriculture and fisheries sectors, it adopted a joint de minimis Regulation for agriculture and fisheries in 2004 (Commission Regulation (EC) No 1860/2004) and has now adopted one specific to the fisheries sector.

De minimis ceiling

The de minimis ceiling for the fisheries sector is set at EUR 30 000 per three-year period and per beneficiary, on condition that the total amount of such aid granted to undertakings is below 2.5 % of the national annual production of the sector.


De minimis aid must be transparent aid, in other words aid for which it is possible to calculate precisely in advance the gross grant equivalent without the need to undertake a risk assessment. This is why aid in the form of capital injections or risk capital measures is not transparent aid if the capital injection is above the de minimis ceiling.

The Regulation applies to all undertakings active in the production, processing and marketing of fisheries products.

The Regulation does not apply to:

  • aid of an amount that is fixed on the basis of price or quantity of products put on the market;
  • aid favouring export-related activities;
  • aid contingent upon the use of domestic over imported goods;
  • aid granted to undertakings in difficulty with a view to their rescuing or their restructuring;
  • aid serving to increase fishing capacity, except for aid for modernisation over the main deck;
  • aid for the purchase or construction of fishing vessels.


Any Member State who grants de minimis aid must strictly monitor the aid granted.

It must inform the beneficiary in writing of the amount of this aid. It must also obtain from the undertaking, before the aid is granted, a declaration on other de minimis aid received in the previous two fiscal years and in the fiscal year concerned.

However, where a Member State has set up a central register of de minimis aid for the fisheries sector containing all the requested information, the above conditions shall no longer apply. To this end, the register must cover a period of three fiscal years.

The Member State may grant the aid to the undertaking in question only if this does not raise the total amount above the ceiling set for the fiscal period concerned.

Furthermore, Members States must record and compile all the information to allow the Commission to establish that the conditions of this Regulation have been complied with. The records are to be maintained for ten fiscal years. On written request from the Commission, the Member States must provide the Commission with all the information that the Commission considers necessary.


Act Entry into force - Date of expiry Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Regulation (EC) No 875/2007 1.8.2007 – 31.12.2013 - OJ L 193 of 25.7.2007
Last updated: 27.05.2008
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