Table of Contents

Research Handbook on EU Public Procurement Law

Research Handbook on EU Public Procurement Law

Research Handbooks in European Law series

Edited by Christopher Bovis

The Research Handbook on EU Public Procurement Law makes a major contribution to our understanding of the EU public procurement regime, at a time when it is being implemented by the EU Member States, and of the pivotal role that this will play for the delivery of the European 2020 Growth Strategy. The internal market relies on a simplified regime in the European Union, which will result from procedural efficiencies and from streamlining the application of the substantive rules. The Research Handbook has comprehensive thematic coverage which includes: public procurement regulation, strategic procurement, justiciability in public procurement, public procurement and competition and public procurement and public service.

Chapter 15: Public procurement and State aid

Mihalis Kekelekis and Kine Neslein

Subjects: law - academic, european law, politics and public policy, public policy


Public procurement, as well as State aid, constitutes instruments, which are traditionally used by Member States to define or direct their economic policies. Article 3 of the Treaty of the European Union stresses the need for the European Union (EU) to establish an internal market. In order for the internal market to function, Articles 3 and 4 of the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) provides the EU and the Member States with competence to establish the necessary rules. The public procurement rules aim to prevent the foreclosure of the internal market. If left unregulated, Member States are likely to favour national undertakings. Hence, the award of public contracts by public authorities in the Member States is subject to the principles of equal treatment, non-discrimination, transparency and proportionality. The public procurement rules open the market for public contracts to competition and ensure compliance with basic EU law principles. The State aid rules on the other hand aim to prevent trade between Member States from being affected by advantages granted by public authorities. The purpose of State aid regulation is therefore to avoid distortions of the competition on the market by States granting subsidies and other financial advantages to undertakings. Such State measures can distort intra-EU competition both by excluding foreign competitors, as well as by attracting foreign competitors to a particular market or region. State aid can also have the effect of creating subsidy races between Member States.

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