Prague, Czechia


The Interpenetration of the Branches of Public Law and Private Law on the Example of Possibly Illegal

State Aid to Sports Clubs Bartłomiej Mikołaj Gawrecki Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań Department of Public Economic Law Al. Niepodległości 53, Poznań, 61-753 Poland e-mail:

Abstract: The subject of this Article is presenting the author’s view on the interpenetration of the branches of public law and private law on the example of potentially illegal state aid (in the light of European Union law) for sports clubs. The main purpose of the Article was to answer the question whether the support provided by public authorities to sports clubs constitute illegal state aid and to present that the support instruments used are a good example to demonstrate that it is necessary to distinguish a new concept in the legal doctrine – border law. Exemplary legal solutions regarding the law of the borders were presented and an attempt was made to assess whether there is illegal state aid in the case of support for sports clubs by the public authorities. Keywords: state aid, border law, sports law, public law, sponsorship JEL Classiffication: K210 1. Introduction Sport has always been a subject of general public interest. As an area of r​ ivalry for various interest groups, it was also of interest to public authorities. The involvement of public authorities in sports activities was influenced, among others, by the fact that the value of the sports market increases significantly every year – according to 2018 data, the global value of the sports market is estimated at US $ 488.5 billion (Polish Economic Institute, 2019, p. 4). The relationship between sports activities and financing, also from public funds, is inseparable and significant, as sport is treated as an economic activity. Sport is – also in the European Union – perceived as an extremely important element. The EU recognises professional football as economically, socially, and culturally vital; thus, in the highly politicised arena of state aid, enforcement is far from straightforward. This overlooked tension between EU law and sport provides


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