EU Takes Greece to Court Over Illegal State Aid to Mining Company Larco



The Headquarters of the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg. File photo

The European Commission announced on Wednesday that it will bring Greece to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) for failing to recover state aid once given to Greek mining company Larco.

Athens failed to comply with a 2017 ruling by the Union’s Supreme Court which condemned Greece for its failure to implement the Commission’s 2014 decision requiring it to recover €135.8 million of illegal aid granted to Larco General Mining & Metallurgical Company.

The 2014 decision by the Commission ruled that Larco had indeed received state aid which resulted in the company having an undue advantage over its competitors, in breach of European Union state aid rules.

The European Commission is now asking the ECJ to impose on Greece a lump sum fine amounting to approximately €3,709 per day for the period between November 9, 2017 and the date Greece complies with the Court’s ruling, or alternatively, the date of delivery of the Court’s second ruling.

The minimum fine that Athens would now have to pay would not be lower than €1.3 million.

Larco is a ferronickel production company which operates mines in the regions of Euboea, Neo Kokkino, Kastoria and Servia in Greece.