Almost two-thirds of total transport aid (around 1,5 billion Euros per year) was awarded to the maritime sector during the period 2006- 2008. Most cases in this sector concern the public financing of port infrastructure, social aid to seafarers and special taxation rules for shipping companies (tonnage tax schemes).
At the other and, air transport received only an annual average of 100 million Euros, especially as state aid to airports and start-up aid to airlines. Aid amounts reported for road and combined transport sector (836 million Euros per year on average during the period 2006-2008) underestimate the amount of public financing of these services because a large amount of public financing for bus services operated under a public service contract is not notified to the European Commission. The same is true for railways: a large amount of public financing for railways does not need to be notified to the European Commission, either because it does not constitute state aid within the meaning of the EC Treaty or because it is exempted from notification in accordance with Regulations 1191/69 and 1192/69. Member States are however required to report to the Commission overall public expenditure to this sector.
Over 46 billion Euros was reported by Member States for 2008, and following complaints from competitors in this sector, the Commission initiated in 2007-2008 formal investigation procedures in Germany and Denmark.