This site is part of the Informa Connect Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 3099067.

December 2021
London, United Kingdom

An in-depth examination of EU Law, plus implications and updates for the UK

A 3-day deep dive course providing beginning to end understanding of the topic of State aid - delivered by Suzanne Rab, a UK and EU qualified practitioner, barrister, author, economics consultant and professor, in this discrete area, who has worked on leading UK and EU cases for 20 years.

On-demand Content Now Available

To register your interest for the 2021 State Aid Immersion Course, download the 2020 brochure here.

Meet the Programme Leader

The programme was led by Professor Suzanne Rab of Serle Court Chambers.  Suzanne has two decades of wide experience of EU law, regulatory and competition law matters combining State aid, public procurement, cartel regulation, commercial practices, IP exploitation, merger control and trade. 

Suzanne’s practice has involved acting for State aid granting/awarding authorities as well as beneficiaries of potential state support. Suzanne regularly advises local and central government and other public bodies on the interface between State aid and public procurement law, including the circumstances in which compliance with public procurement rules ensures satisfaction with State aid rules.

Suzanne has advised granting authorities inside and outside the UK in a wide range of sectors including energy, communications, financial services, food/beverage, healthcare/pharmaceuticals, infrastructure, and transportation.   She has also provided support to the CMA as part of its capacity building and preparations for its future role as independent State aid regulator.

Her representations for business include advising Noble Energy in relation to its investments in the Cyprus energy sector (a representation straddling State aid, competition law, public procurement, investment treaty and trade law advice). Suzanne is Professor of Commercial Law and Practice Chair at Brunel University London.


The State Aid Immersion Course took place against the emerging framework for a new role for UK subsidy control as well as some uncertainty as to the future interaction between regulation and the UK’s trading arrangements. This intensive three-day programme provided attendees with a practical insight into strategies for dealing with their state aid risk management in the wake of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU on 31st January 2020 and a new UK subsidy control regime expected to take effect at the end of December 2020.

The pandemic gave renewed impetus to questions of state aid with states adopting strenuous financial support and stimulus measures in ways not seen since the 2008 financial crisis. Now more than ever the EU state aid regime has had to react with agility to ensure that economic assistance is provided in a coordinated and targeted way.


By the end of the session, participants gained an understanding, overview and practical experience of the application of:

  • the system and legal framework for state aid control at EU and national level;
  • the key principles of the concept of state aid;
  • the principles and assessment of compatibility of state aid;
  • instruments used for the assessment of state aid including block exemptions, communications and guidance;
  • the state aid procedural enforcement framework at EU and national level, including how to notify a measure, recovery of unlawful aid and judicial challenge in the EU and domestic courts

By the end of the session participants gained an understanding, overview and practical experience of the application of:

  • de minimis aid under the de Minimis Regulation 1407/2013 including the financial thresholds and cumulation rules;
  • the concept of Services of General Economic Interest (SGEI), the SGEI Package, the Altmark criteria and how to calculate compensation;
  • sector-specific SGEI;
  • the General Block Exemption Regulation (GBER) including the common and specific provisions and application to specific categories of aid

By the end of the session participants gained:

  • an understanding, overview and practical experience of the application of state aid rules in specific areas of policy and the economy:
  • research and development and innovation
  • rescue and restructuring
  • regional aid
  • taxation
  • selected industry sectors (energy, financial and media and communications);
  • an outline of the implications of Brexit on state aid and subsidy control enforcement and policy in the UK

State Aid Immersion Course 2020:

Key benefits
Key benefits
  • An integrated and intense training programme that combines UK and EU experience in this fast-moving, challenging and high-profile area
  • An opportunity to translate academic learnings, policy and economic principles into practice through interactive case studies, including workshops and video-based scenarios
  • Current experience and insights from leading international practitioners. The course is led by Professor Suzanne Rab, barrister at Serle Court Chambers, who has advised on some of the most high-profile state aid and EU law matters
  • Focus on the application of State aid law in multiple contexts including local as well as central government
  • Insight into the application of state aid law in different policy areas
  • Discussion forum and state aid surgeries to discuss your state aid queries with a leading practitioner
Course content
Course content
  • The programme provides an overview of the key areas of state aid control and can serve as both an introduction to participants unfamiliar with this area and a refresher for those with more experience seeking to upskill
  • Reflective of the background of some uncertainty as to the precise nature and scope of the future model for state aid control in the UK following negotiations, the programme will provide a solid grounding in the essentials of EU state aid control as applied by the European Commission and as interpreted by the European Courts. It will also address possible alternative future models for state aid regulation in the UK
  • The starting assumption will be that, after December 2020 and subject to any further transitional period as yet to be agreed, the UK framework will replicate the existing EU state aid framework, with only technical modifications to correct deficiencies with the transposed EU law to ensure the regime operates effectively in a domestic context.  However, this is a high profile and sensitive area of regulation and other scenarios including soft-alignment or divergence from the EU over time need to be planned for

Special features
Special features
  • Opportunity to interact and share insights with peers from the UK, EU and international legal and economics community across the public and private sector
  • Beyond text-book learning, you will apply your learning in realistic scenarios under the guidance of practitioners with over 20 years of experience in UK, EU and international state aid, competition law and economic regulation
  • A combination of workshops and seminars allows for participants to gain a maximum exposure to the subject areas in a format which appeals to different learning styles.
  • Use of video and interactive media to bring to life case studies
  • Course evaluation to record your satisfactory completion of the course
  • Participants will have an opportunity to test their knowledge and experience in practice through interactive workshops that put them 'in role' in genuine and challenging situations
This course will be of particular interest to...
This course will be of particular interest to...
  • Public sector employees with responsibility for making state aid decisions ranging from direct grants of public funds to other economic benefits, including central government, local authorities and Local Enterprise Partnerships
  • Lawyers in private practice seeking an overview and understanding of EU state aid law and how it applies in the UK in an intense and evolving environment
  • In-house lawyers and compliance officers in businesses with UK and European operations, seeking a greater understanding of state aid law
  • Academics with a dual interest in UK and EU law
  • Any of the above individuals seeking to update and deepen their foundational knowledge of state aid law now and against the unfolding context of Brexit
  • Any of the above individuals with an interest in third countries which have adopted state aid rules, including Ukraine and other countries in the South Eastern European region
  • Any of the above individuals with an interest in trade law and policy seeking to broaden their interest in the interface between state aid and WTO subsidy rules

PHD Student

Eastern Europe

“The core of this [course] was the course lead, Suzanne Rab, who has combined in great manner, the theory and practice. But this was especially because the examples came from her international experience and her barrister cases. Suzanne Rab [possesses] a valuable teaching vocation and tremendous knowledge. She can involve every student in discussion and learning. She has managed very well the time, the subjects and the discussions.”

Brought to you in association with

2020 Knowledge Partner

2020 Media Partners

Sponsorship Opportunities

We have a number of exclusive and innovative sponsorship and speaking options, to help you demonstrate thought leadership in the State Aid arena.

For more information please contact Enes Duzen at or call Enes on +44 (0)20 7551 9505.


Commentary, opinions and guidance from industry experts - all gathered for you in one place