General – hydrogen
The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, a €900 million German scheme to support investments in the production of renewable hydrogen in non-EU countries, which will be then imported and sold in the EU.
The scheme, called ‘H2Global’, aims at meeting the EU demand for renewable hydrogen that is expected to significantly increase in the coming years, by supporting the development of the unexploited renewable resource potential outside the EU. It will contribute to the EU environmental objectives, in line with the European Green Deal, without unduly distorting competition in the Single Market.
Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said: “This €900 million German scheme will support projects leading to substantial reductions in greenhouse emissions, in line the EU’s environmental and climate objectives set out in the Green Deal. It will contribute to addressing the increasing demand for renewable hydrogen in the Union, by supporting the development of this important energy source in areas of the world where it is currently not exploited with a view to importing it and selling it in the EU. The design of the scheme will enable only the most cost effective projects to be supported, reducing costs for taxpayers and minimising possible distortions of competition.”
The German scheme
Germany notified the Commission of its plans to introduce a new scheme, ‘H2Global’, to support the production of renewable hydrogen in non-EU countries, to be imported and sold in the EU. The scheme, which has an estimated budget of €900 million, will run for 10 years starting from the award of the first contract under the scheme.
The scheme will be managed and implemented by a special-purpose entity named HINT.CO. This intermediary will conclude long-term purchase contracts on the supply side (green hydrogen production) and short-term resale contracts on the demand side (green hydrogen usage).