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Brussels, 20 April 2004

Commission approves aid for air logistics centre operated by DHL Airways GmbH in Leipzig/Halle

Today, the Commission approved a grant of € 70.8 million for the establishment of a new air logistics centre to be operated by airfreight operator DHL Airways in Leipzig/Halle. Given an eligible investment volume of €253.055 million, the approved aid corresponds to an aid intensity of 28% gross - intensity in line with the 1998 EU Multisectoral framework on regional aid for large investment projects.

DHL Airways GmbH intends to set up and operate an air logistics centre at Leipzig/Halle airport. The air logistics centre will allow DHL Airways GmbH to offer its services, i.e., the whole range of logistics surrounding the delivery (express delivery or normal delivery) of items by air.

The aid recipient will be the company DHL Airways GmbH, Cologne. DHL Airways GmbH is a wholly owned subsidiary of DHL Worldwide Express B.V., Netherlands, which in turn is fully owned by DHL Holdings N.V., Dutch Antilles. The latter company is fully owned by Deutsche Post AG, Bonn.

The Commission assessed the proposed aid measure under the 1998 Multisectoral Framework on regional aid for large investment projects (the "1998 Multisectoral Framework").

The relevant market is the market for the delivery of items by air (express and freight items) on a world-wide basis.

The Commission has examined whether the relevant market in this case is a declining market and has found this not to be the case, since the currently available data actually indicate growth within the sector. Germany states that the project at the new site will create 1 359 new permanent full-time jobs and 40 full-time jobs for trainees. On that basis the maximum allowable aid intensity for the aid measure is 28% gross. The Commission could therefore approve the proposed grant.

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