The application of the Market Economy Investor Principle to assess the existence of economic advantage in case of differentiated airport charges of the European Union’s airports
Riga Graduate School of Law
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The commercial aviation market is one of the fastest growing and most liberalised sectors of the economy in the EU. Development of low cost carriers changed the aviation world as regional airports experienced a boost of traffic and prospects of their financial sustainability. On the other hand, the expansion of low cost carriers in the EU airports resulted in many complaints from full service airlines. This resulted in the development of case law, both at the Commission and The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) level. According to the case law, price differentiation of airport charges is not considered as granting of economic advantage to the particular undertaking if a market economy operator had adopted a similar practice guided by the prospects of long term profitability. The Master’s Thesis includes an analysis of State aid cases of the Commission and judgements of the CJEU concerning the application of the Market Economy Investor Principle with regard to agreements concluded among airports (airport managing bodies) and airport users (airlines).