UK subsidy control regime

Guidance and information on the UK subsidy control regime.

The UK subsidy control regime enables UK public authorities, including devolved administrations and local authorities, to give subsidies that are tailored to their local needs, and that drive economic growth, while minimising distortion to UK competition and protecting our international obligations.

This page provides information on:

  • the subsidy control regime
  • the UK’s international subsidy control requirements
  • the role of departments, devolved governments and the Subsidy Advice Unit (within the Competition and Markets Authority) in supporting public authorities
  • subsidy control for beneficiaries

The Subsidy Control Act provides the framework for the regime.

UK subsidy database

Use this finder tool to search the full list of active subsidy schemes and view all the businesses that have received subsidies and subsidy awards under each scheme:

Subsidies and subsidy schemes awarded by the government


Public authorities can contact the DBT Subsidy Control team:

Public authorities in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland should contact the subsidy control teams in the Scottish Government, Welsh Government and Northern Ireland Civil Service for support and guidance:

Guidance on the UK subsidy control regime

There are several guidance products to help public authorities understand and apply the subsidy control regime. This includes statutory guidance.  Public authorities must have regard to this statutory guidance when giving subsidies. There is also an introductory guide to the key requirements for public authorities,  and a subsidy control principles assessment template.

Organisations receiving subsidy may wish to read the short guidance document on subsidy control for beneficiaries, which explains public authorities’ duties and other key features of the regime.

A video introducing the UK Subsidy Control regime

Read a transcript of the video.

Streamlined Routes

Streamlined routes are a type of subsidy scheme made by the UK government that offer a pre-assessed option. They are designed to help public authorities award subsidies more quickly.

We have published streamlined routes in the following 3 areas:

  • research, development and innovation
  • energy usage
  • local growth

International subsidy control commitments

These 2 guidance documents outline how public authorities giving subsidies must comply with the UK’s international subsidy control commitments. They cover:

  • international subsidy control guidance covering World Trade Organization rules, the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement and the UK’s other free trade agreements
  • guidance for public authorities on the scope and application of Article 10 of the Windsor Framework

Roles and responsibilities

Guidance and information on subsidy control teams in the UK, its devolved governments and the Subsidy Advice Unit.

The role of the Subsidy Advice Unit (SAU) is to evaluate public authorities’ own assessments in respect of Subsidies or Schemes of Interest or Particular Interest.

The unit sits within the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

Monitoring and evaluation

The Department for Business and Trade has commissioned a report into public authorities’ experiences of subsidy control under the UK–EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement (between 2021 and 2023), which will serve as a baseline for future monitoring and evaluation exercises on the Subsidy Control Act.


Published 23 September 2022
Last updated 18 December 2023 + show all updates
  1. Monitoring and evaluation of subsidy control regime: establishing a baseline and Subsidy control: a guide for beneficiaries added.

  2. Updates to international commitments guidance with new guidance on the Windsor Framework.

  3. The UK subsidy control regime begins today.

  4. How subsidy control applies to agriculture: guidance for public authorities added.

  5. We are holding an in-person event in Cardiff on 12 January 2023: register your interest now.

  6. Added Streamlined Routes document to page.

  7. Public authorities one-to-one appointments added. UK subsidy control statutory guidance and Subsidy control rules: key requirements for public authorities published.

  8. We have published details of a series of in-person / online events for public authorities, to explain the main features and principles of the new regime.

  9. First published.