Swedish publisher behind EU press subsidy complaint

Publishing giant Bonnier AB was responsible for delivering a secret complaint to the EU Commission about state support to the press in Sweden.

The revelation was made clear by their reply to the government’s call for comments on a new legislative proposal on the matter.

The analysis of operational support included in the comment is the same as that done in the complaint to the EU Commission.

The complaint itself is also includes as a supplement to the comment, writes the magazine Medievärlden.

Up until now it had been a secret as to which company was behind the complaint delivered to officials in Brussels.

The complaint, as well as the EU Commission’s own objections to the new design of state press subsidies, eventually moved Minister of Culture Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth to put forward a new proposal.

In its response to the new proposal, Bonnier AB has chosen to show its cards.

The criticism of the old proposal remains in addition to an analysis of the new one.

The company claims the new press support formulation disrupts free competition within the industry, favours certain companies, and conflicts with EU rules on state supports. As a result, the proposal is unjust, says Bonnier AB, which is seeking a comprehensive review of state subsidies for the press.