Last June, Romania notified the Commission of a restructuring plan for the National Uranium Company (CNU), which produces raw material to fuel nuclear power plants, with around €95 million (£83.5m) of support in the form of grants, subsidies and debt write-off.
The state-owned firm has been in financial difficulty since the loss of its main client, Nuclearelectrica.
It follows an “urgent rescue aid loan” of €13.3 million (£11.7m) to keep the company afloat, which was approved by the Commission in September 2016.
EU rules only allow state intervention for a company in financial difficulty under specific conditions – that the company contributes to the cost of its restructuring and that any competition distortions are limited.
The opening of the investigation gives interested third parties the opportunity to submit comments.