The European Commission (EC) announced on September 16 the opening of a formal investigation into 39 individual tax rulings granted by the Belgian tax authorities to multinational companies in relation to the ‘excess profit’ tax exemption.
This step in the procedure relates to the opening of a formal investigation. The EC has thus not yet drawn a final conclusion whether the individual rulings also constitute unlawful State aid.
At the end of the formal investigation, the EC will adopt its final decision. There are three possible outcomes: a positive decision, a conditional decision, or a negative decision.
In the event of a negative decision (i.e., if one or more of the individual rulings is found to constitute unlawful State aid), the Belgian government, together with the concerned parties, could appeal the decision before the GC.