Cyprus’ Transport Ministry expressed satisfaction over European Commission’s approval, last week, of a €6.13 million Cypriot incentive scheme geared to support airlines affected by the coronavirus pandemic, having found it to be in line with the State aid Temporary Framework of the EU.

The scheme is a re-introduction of an aid measure initially approved by the Commission on 1 July 2020 (SA.57691), which expired on 31 December 2021.

A press release issued on Monday by the Ministry says that Minister Yiannis Karousos points out that Cyprus has taken the initiative on a European level, for air connectivity and will prepare and promote the relevant declaration. The declaration provides for the support of mainly regional and island member states of the EU. Cyprus’ initiative was welcomed by 12 more EU member states, which are set to co-sign the declaration next April, the press release says.

The scheme, which will take the form of direct grants, 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 from and to Cyprus, and thus enable the recovery of air connectivity and tourism, the press release notes.

The scheme has been found to be in line with the conditions set out in the Temporary Framework, since the aid will not exceed €2.3 million per beneficiary and will be granted no later than 30 June 2022.

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