The European Court has fined Athens 10 million euros – plus another 7 million euros every six months until compliance – for the state’s failure to recoup the state subsidy granted to Hellenic Shipyards SA (ENAE), the company which operates the Skaramangas shipyard.
The decision was relayed to the government on Wednesday, and now both it and the special administrator of the Skaramangas shipyard will have to scramble to avoid the additional fines.
“The ruling was expected and fully justifies the government’s decision to put the shipyard under special administration,” commented Alternate Minister for Industry Stergios Pitsiorlas.
“The court’s decision concerns the noncompliance of our country to the decision of the [European] Commission in 2008 concerning state subsidies to ENAE and highlights the responsibility of the previous governments,” he added. “The six-month period granted for the execution of the decision constitutes an acknowledgement of the fact that the government has now set in motion the recovery procedures,” Pitsiorlas claimed.
In December 2015 the Greek authorities asked ENAE to return over 523.3 million euros, but due to the company’s financial troubles, the funds have not been recouped.