EU approves €520 million Italian scheme to compensate trade fairs

Italy discriminates against foreign lecturers

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The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, a €520 million Italian scheme to compensate companies active in the trade fairs and congress sector and their service providers for the damages suffered due to the restrictive measures introduced by the Italian government to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

Under the scheme, eligible beneficiaries will be entitled to compensation in the form of direct grants for part of the damages incurred between March 9 and June 14 2020 and between October 24 2020 and June 14 2021, periods during which, under the restrictive measures in place, the organisation of such events was not allowed.

Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said, “The measures that the Italian government had to take to limit the spread of the coronavirus pandemic required trade fairs and congress operators to stop their activities, resulting in considerable losses for them as well as for their service providers.

“This €520 million scheme will enable Italy to compensate these companies for the damage suffered. We continue working in close cooperation with Member States to find workable solutions to mitigate the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak, in line with EU rules,” she added on 31 August.

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Deirdre Tynan

Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.