Politics, Subsidies and Competition: The New Politics of State Intervention in the European Union

Politics, Subsidies and Competition focuses on the interplay of political, economic and institutional-legal factors in the formation of European competition policy, with particular emphasis on European Union control of national subsidies. This book demonstrates the increasing significance of the EU in the management of European economies. It argues that state subsidization is the only remaining effective form of state intervention because, in the integrated European market, state aid - ranging from investment and export aid to special tax concessions - has become the only instrument that can be used to favour and protect national industries. This makes the control of state subsidization more important than ever, and the European Community's attempts to increase this control since the mid-1970s tell an intriguing story of fierce intergovernmental bargaining, business lobbying and increasingly assertive EC/EU institutions. The argument is supported by evidence of the evolution of European policy and by case studies of sectoral aid regimes and their transformation in interaction with EU policy. This book will be of use to students and scholars of the economics and politics of Western Europe and regional and public policy.