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State aid control is unusual internationally. State aid is entirely a matter of EU law and is administered by the EU. Unlike other areas of competition law, such as antitrust and merger control, there are no national rules or institutional structure to enforce State aid rules. There is also no international system of State aid control either—aside from the constraints of the WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures—which are much less extensive.
As a result, the referendum outcome creates greater uncertainty as to the future of the State aid regime than for other areas of competition law. This short note considers what the UK’s referendum result might mean for State aid control including for future UK nuclear projects.