The European Commission is giving Dell another €54.5m in regional aid money to expand a PC-making plant in Poland.
The move comes just days after it gave the US PC maker €14.8m to help it find new jobs for 2,840 Irish workers made redundant when it shifted production of mobile PCs from Limerick to Asia.
Dell plans to make desktops, notebooks and servers which is expected to create up to 3 000 direct jobs in the Łódzkie region. The existing €190m plant Łódź (Poland) opened in January 2008 and currently employs 1 700.
The decision follows a formal investigation into the investment in December 2008. The Commission found the Lodz project "will significantly contribute to the regional development of the Łódzkie region and that these benefits outweigh any potential negative effects of the aid on competition and trade", said competition commissioner Neelie Kroes.
This was the commission first in-depth assessment of regional aid to a large investment project.
The commission found that the aid provided an incentive for Dell to locate its manufacturing plant in Łódź by compensating for less favourable investment conditions in comparison with another envisaged location in Eastern Europe. The aid covered the net extra costs of locating the plant in Łódź, it said.
The commission also found that the aid would not crowd out competitors or create significant production capacity in an underperforming market (desktops) since the plant would have been built regardless of the aid, but elsewhere.
The commission said that Dell's job losses in Ireland were not a consequence of the aid granted by the Polish authorities.