Hogan Lovells comments on the UK Government's Subsidy Control Bill

A departure from EU state aid rules

Hogan Lovells Director of Government Affairs Robert Gardener said: “This Bill puts flesh on the bare bones of the new subsidy control regime that the UK has had in place since 1 January 2021. While we wait to analyse the Bill in detail, it seems from today’s announcement that, as expected, the Bill will be fairly bold in its approach with the Government underlining what it is calling the ‘clear departure’ from the EU State aid rules and public bodies being empowered to deliver financial support ‘without facing burdensome red tape’.”

“This is exactly the sort of ‘taking back control’ that Vote-Leavers were campaigning for. It is unlikely we will see a significant rise in the amount of Government support granted to UK businesses under this new regime, because that is not the way the UK has typically approached subsidies. But we can expect speedier decisions, and the use of this new regime to support broader government objectives like levelling up and promoting the UK’s global tech standing. It also feels like a good counterweight to the incoming NSI regime, which has been largely received with caution from Business given its potential for restrictions on corporate activity. But accusations of too much politicisation can of course be countered by the devolving of subsidy decision-making to bodies across the UK, and the further empowerment of the CMA in the proposals.”

“Most importantly for businesses is the opportunity to engage with the proposals while they are still being considered. The most effective way of doing this will be directly with Government, and having a firm understanding of the legal, regulatory and broader policy landscapes in doing so.” 

If you would like to talk about the opportunities (and challenges) arising from the announcement, please let us know. For information on the firm's UK2030 programme, click here

Key contacts: 

Robert Gardener 

Ciara Kennedy-Loest

Back To Listing