On 17 December 2008, the European Commission (Commission) adopted a Framework under which national authorities may adopt temporary measures to address the problems that many companies are facing in seeking financial assistance as a result of the current credit squeeze. Under the Framework, national authorities will be able to grant individual aid in the form of subsidised loans, loan guarantees at a reduced premium, risk capital aid for small and medium-sized enterprises of up to €2.5m and direct aid of up to €500,000 without notification subject to certain conditions. The measures are intended to provide relief limited to the current crisis and will expire at the end of 2010.