Eversheds Sutherland has successfully represented the Polish State Treasury before the European Union's Court of Justice in proceedings related to the PLN 1.38 billion in state aid received by Autostrada Wielkopolska.
According to Eversheds Sutherland, Polish company Autostrada Wielkopolska (AWSA) received compensation from the State Treasury for lost profits until 2011, under a concession agreement. "Compensation payments were caused by AWSA’s obligation to cease charging heavy goods vehicles drivers any tolls for passage with valid vignettes on the section of the A2 motorway it built and has been operating. However, following the verification of the data used for calculation of the compensation, it was evident that the data were incorrect and the compensation was paid in an excessive amount," the firm informed.
According to the firm, "in parallel with the commercial dispute, Poland notified the European Commission regarding the initiated proceedings. The EC concluded that state aid in question was incompatible with EU law, and AWSA received compensation higher than allowed under the common market. The Commission ordered Poland to recover the state aid granted. However, the EC's decision was appealed by AWSA to the EU Court, which dismissed the complaint. AWSA appealed against this decision to the CJEU, which in its judgment of November 11, 2021, dismissed the appeal and thereby confirmed the correctness of the EC's decision on recovery of undue state aid to the State Treasury." The firm reported that the PLN 1.38 billion overpaid compensation, already deposited by AWSA in 2018, will not be returned to the company.
The Eversheds Sutherland team included Senior Partner Krzysztof Wierzbowski and Partner Maciej Jozwiak.