The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, Dutch plans to providealmost €33 million of public funding for the installation and operation of charging stations for electric vehicles. This scheme willcontribute to the roll-out of the necessary infrastructure to make electric cars a viable alternative in the Netherlands. It contributes to promoting sustainable transport and improving air quality, without unduly distorting competition in the Single Market.
Margrethe Vestager, Commissioner in charge of competition, said:"Electric cars can provide real benefits to society by reducing CO2emissions, pollution and noise. The Dutch public support scheme approved today will help make electric cars a viable alternative to citizens in the Netherlands by providing the necessary infrastructure, whilst keeping costs under control in line with EU state aid rules."
Under the Dutch Green Deal scheme for publicly accessible charging infrastructure, local authorities can decide to participate in the support scheme andchoose from a number of options the type of charging post infrastructure that best suits their local community. The public funding for the installation and operation of electric charging posts in their areacomes from the local authority concerned and is complemented by the central government. The scheme also requires local authorities to draw in private investment to be eligible for the state support.
The operators of the electric charging posts will be selected through competitive tenders. The scheme will last for 3 years ending on 1 July 2018.
The Dutch measure has a clear environmental objective whilst limiting distortions of competition, and is therefore compatible with EU state aid rules (Article 107(3)(c) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union). The tender process is expected to keep the amount of aid needed to the minimumnecessary. The scheme will also be reviewed on an annual basis to make sure that the real costs of operating and installing the charging posts are reflected in the aid granted.
In 2014, the EU adopted the Directive on the deployment of transport infrastructures based on electricity or other alternatives to fossil fuels. It sets a common European framework for the deployment of such infrastructure on the basis of national policy plans and European minimum requirements. The legislation explicitly recognises that the deployment of such infrastructure must comply with EU state aid rules.
The non-confidential version of today's decision will be made available under the case number SA.38769 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.
 Directive 2014/94 EC of the European Parliament and the Council of 22 October 2014 on the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure.