Only 3 entities out of 39 contested state aid for TAP. Brazil was among the most supportive

  • ECO News
  • 14 February 2022

Ryanair, euroAtlantic Airways and Porto Trade Association tried to stop TAP's restructuring process.

The European Commission has received comments from 39 entities on TAP’s state aid, almost all of them favourable. The aid was contested only by the Porto Trade Association, euroAtlantic Airways and Ryanair, which in a lengthy submission vehemently challenges the airline’s restructuring.

TAP’s restructuring process seemed to be on track when, on July 16, Brussels opened an in-depth investigation. The quick decision that the government and the airline’s management had hoped for has now taken an uncertain and much longer path. First of all, the European Commission has to give interested parties the opportunity to express their views.

By September 6, 2021, 39 entities sent comments to Brussels. The Portuguese government and TAP have gathered broad support for their cause. “All stakeholders, except two direct competitors and one other party, support the restructuring aid and confirm the important role played by TAP in Portugal’s connectivity with the Union and other regions of the world and for Portugal’s economy,” says the non-confidential version of the decision giving the green light to the state aid.

Only the objectors are identified, about the others, it is only known that 13 are business partners – such as travel agencies, tour operators and associations representing them, – a large hotel group, a supplier, an airport manager and an air traffic control agency.

A total of 8 comments were also submitted by several public entities, most notably from “several states of Brazil, as well as the Brazilian Ministry of Tourism”. In addition, a further 10 contributions were made by organisations promoting tourism and commercial and cultural interaction.