EU rules prevent crisis help

Flag EU Norway 25th Anniversary EEANorwegian and EU Flags. Photo: Lise Åserud / Scanpix

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EU regulations prevent the state from offering loan guarantees to companies that were in trouble even before the corona crisis.

Over 1,000 companies have already been granted state-guaranteed loans totaling more than NOK 4 billion through the corporate loan guarantee scheme.

But under the EEA agreement, the guarantee scheme is defined as state aid.

This means that the scheme must meet the requirements of the EU Commission’s temporary framework for the granting of state aid in connection with the outbreak of the Coronavirus, explains Finance Minister Jan Tore Sanner (H) in his answer to a written question on the matter from Sylvi Listhaug (Frp).

“One of the conditions in the framework is that the companies that will receive government-guaranteed loans were not in financial difficulties as of December 31, 2019,” he writes.

Sanner makes it clear that the government has no way to alleviate this.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today

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