General Block Exemption Regulation

The General Block Exemption Regulation (GBER) provides State aid cover for categories of aid which are exempt from the European Commission's (EC) formal notification process.

Public authorities should note that the information on this page is only applicable when the aid being provided is within the scope of Article 10 of the Northern Ireland Protocol. If you are providing support to service sector companies please refer to the information on the State aid and Subsidy control after EU Exit webpage.

About the General Block Exemption Regulation

The General Block Exemption Regulation (GBER) allows Member States to provide aid without going through the EC's full notification process. 

Aid givers providing aid under the GBER must register the award of aid, or the scheme under which it operates, within 20 working days of its commencement.

Amendments to the GBER 

July 2017

The GBER was amended by Commission Regulation (EU) 2017/1084  to extend the scope of the GBER to ports and airports (Sections 14 and 15 of Chapter III). Other amendments include an increase in the notification thresholds for measures supporting culture and sports/multifunctional recreational infrastructure and new anti-relocation provisions relating to regional investment aid. You can read more about the changes in the Commission's Frequently Asked Questions document.

July 2020

In July 2020 the EC prolonged the GBER until December 2023 by Commission Regulation (EU) 2020/972.

July 2021

The GBER was further amended by Commission Regulation (EU) 2021/1237 to simplify rules for aid combined with EU support and to introduce new possibilities to implement aid measures supporting the twin transition and the recovery from coronavirus pandemic. You can read more about the changes in Commission's Frequently Asked Questions document.

How to find out more about the GBER

You can find out more about the GBER in State aid: A Beginner's Guide to State aid for Public Bodies in Northern Ireland.

Transparency of GBER Schemes

Member States must publish information on their GBER schemes so that it can be easily accessed by anyone who wants to see it.

DfE State aid Unit maintains a:

To update the list of GBER schemes, please contact:

GBER Transparency Reporting

Since 1 July 2016 the GBER details of any individual provision of support with a value of €500,000 or over has been reported to the European Commission (EC) using its online reporting system. The information provided by the Member States is published on a Transparency database that can be accessed by the public.

DfE Subsidy Control Advice Unit (SCAU) co-ordinates input of information regarding Northern Ireland GBER payments over €500,000 and commissions returns on a quarterly basis from known GBER aid providers in Northern Ireland. 

As an aid provider you may tell SCAU about GBER support with a value of over €500,000 at any time, you do not need to wait until the quarterly exercise to tell us. If you would like to let us know about an individual award of GBER aid with a value of over €500,000 please complete GBER - Declaration of Support, and email it to SCAU:

If you have any questions about the GBER Transparency requirements, or how to complete the GBER declaration form, please contact SCAU using the email address above.

Further information


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