Brussels, 21 November 2012
State aid: Commission endorses €1.56 billion compensation for Poste Italiane for public services delivered over 2009-2011
The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, two compensations received by Poste Italiane for delivering two public services in the period 2009-2011, namely a compensation of €1.1 billion for the universal postal service and a compensation of €458 million for reduced postal tariffs offered, over the same period, to publishers, not-for-profit organisations and electoral candidates. The measures were in line with EU rules on public service compensation since, in particular, they did not over-compensate Poste Italiane for providing these services, and therefore did not lead to cross-subsidisation of commercial activities.
Poste Italiane is the main postal operator in Italy and had 146.014 employees, 14.005 post offices and a turnover of €9.6 billion in 2010. Besides providing core postal services, Poste Italiane offers integrated products, as well as communication, logistic and financial services all over Italy.
In June 2012, Italy notified compensations amounting to €1.1 billion granted to Poste Italiane for the delivery of the universal service on the Italian territory over 2009-2011. The Italian authorities also informed the Commission of €458 million compensations granted to Poste Italiane for reduced tariffs offered, over the same period, to publishers, not-for-profit organisations and electoral candidates.
As the two measures had not been notified to the Commission before their implementation, they constitute illegal state aid in the meaning of the EU rules. The Commission assessed the measures under its Framework on services of general economic interest (SGEI) adopted in December 2011 (see IP/11/1571) and found that they complied with the set of provisions that are apply to illegal state aid granted before its entry into force. In particular, Poste Italiane not been overcompensated for the delivery of the two public services. The Commission therefore concluded that both measures were compatible with EU state aid rules.
The non-confidential version of the decision will be made available under the case number SA.33989 in the State Aid Register on the DG Competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved. New publications of state aid decisions on the internet and in the Official Journal are listed in the State Aid Weekly e-News.
Antoine Colombani (+32 2 297 45 13)
Maria Madrid Pina (+32 2 295 45 30)