France to significantly increase flight tax

Editorial

The French aviation industry is concerned about a proposal to greatly increase the flight tax in France. As a result, an Economy Class ticket for a flight of more than 2000 kilometers would be subject to a surcharge of 60 euros, and even 400 euros on a Business Class ticket.

The sector fears that this will lead to an even greater crisis in French aviation, according to Le Figaro and Les Echos, among others. It would generate 4.2 billion euros for the state, but it would also cause French air traffic to fall by 14 to 19 percent and to lose 120,000 to 150,000 jobs.

The proposal comes from the Convention citoyenne pour le climat (Citizens’ Convention for the Climate), the working group appointed by French President Macron to prepare climate plans. The president is said to support the plan. Ultimately, parliament will have the final say on the matter.

The purpose of the tax increase is to make flying less attractive. According to research by French aviation authority DGAC, the tax would reduce French CO2 emissions by 0.79 percent. This may be less if the French move en masse to foreign airports, such as Amsterdam, Brussels or Frankfurt. The increased flight tax would cost Air France 1.2 billion euros annually, the DGAC has calculated. It is assumed that the tax does not apply to transfer passengers.

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