2018 January 24 14:26

EC approves state rescue aid to Croatian Uljanik Shipyard

The European Commission has found that Croatian plans to grant Uljanik Shipyard (part of the Uljanik Group) a State guarantee for a €96 million loan are in line with EU State aid rules, the EC official website said.

The measure will allow the company to meet urgent liquidity needs while preparing a restructuring plan, whilst competition distortions are limited.

On 15 January 2018, Croatia completed its notification to the Commission of plans to grant a State guarantee on a €96 million loan in favour of Uljanik Shipyard.

The shipbuilding company is located in Pula, in the county of Istria, Croatia, and employs around 1 800 people. It has been in financial difficulties for several years due to the adverse effects of the financial crisis on the shipbuilding sector in general, and on the resulting low orders for new vessels in particular.

The measure will enable Uljanik Shipyard to pay wages, suppliers and other urgent liabilities over the next months and prevent it from going out of business, while preparing a restructuring plan, the Commission media release said.

"The Croatian State guarantee will help the Uljanik shipyard to continue operating and maintain 1 800 jobs, while they work out a sound restructuring strategy to ensure its future. We approved it today. The restructuring plan must return the company to long-term viability without continued public support, to preserve jobs in Istria on a sustainable basis," Margrethe Vestager, Commissioner in charge of competition policy was quoted as saying.