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EU Commission Approves €6 Million Cypriot Scheme to Support Airlines Affected by COVID-19

The European Union Commission has approved a €6.13 million Cypriot incentive scheme aimed at helping airlines affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The plan, which will take the form of direct grants, is to reintroduce an aid measure that was initially approved by the Commission in July 2020 but expired in December 2021, reports.

The aim of this measure is to support airlines in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and will be open to all interested airlines operating routes to and from Cyprus.

“The aim of the scheme is to support airlines in a comprehensive and non-discriminatory manner in order to re-establish air routes to/from Cyprus and thus enable the restoration of air connectivity and tourism,” the commission’s statement read.

It was revealed that the level of fare will depend on the load factor of each aircraft, starting from the 41 percent load factor and up to 70 percent, and will be paid for each passenger carried.

After concluding that the scheme is in line with the conditions set out in the interim framework, the Commission has established that the aid will not exceed €2.3 million per beneficiary.

“The Committee concluded that the measure is necessary, appropriate and proportionate to address a serious disruption to the economy of a Member State, consistent with Article 107(3)(b) TFEU and the conditions set forth in the Interim Framework,” the Committee added.

With the exception of the approved scheme for Cyprus, the commission agreed to another measure as well.

The latter approved a €5 million Belgian plan aimed at supporting cultural events and sectors affected by the coronavirus pandemic. It was revealed that eligible beneficiaries will be able to receive reimbursable advances of up to €150,000.

The amount to be awarded to each beneficiary will be calculated based on the business plan.

Similar to the other procedure mentioned above, the assistance approved for Belgium follows the conditions set out in the interim framework.

Previously, the Commission decided to invest more than 110 million euros in the integrated projects of the LIFE Program for Environmental Protection and Climate. With this investment, the Commission will support environmental and climate projects in 11 European countries, including France, the Netherlands, Finland, Denmark and others.

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