French Eco-Tax On Flights Is Likely To Be Cancelled


A huge increase in the French flight tax is unlikely to happen. The Minister of Finance and the State Secretary for Transport, among others, have spoken out against the plan. Also, there doesn’t seem to be a majority in parliament to support the tax increase.

Should the tax be put in place, airline tickets would become much more expensive. For example, an Economy Class ticket for a distance of more than 2000 kilometers would cost 60 euros extra, and a Business Class ticket for that distance 400 euros extra. The surcharge will be lower for shorter distances and higher for longer distances.

The plan comes from the Convention citoyenne pour le climat (Citizen’s Convention for the Climate), the working group appointed by President Macron to prepare climate plans. Macron had shown his support for the plan, but this was followed by a strong protest from the aviation sector.

Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire has now said that he would find it very unwise, even grotesque, to burden the aviation sector with much higher costs in these difficult times. The Secretary of State for Transport, Jean-Baptiste Djebbari, fears “catastrophic consequences”.

The French aviation authority DGAC has already calculated that the introduction, which will yield the French state 4.2 billion euros, will also cost 120,000 to 150,000 jobs and lead to a reduction in air traffic of 14 to 19 percent. Air France is said to lose an additional 1.2 billion euros annually, should the tax be indroduced.

Because of these drawbacks, the government will probably put the plan on hold, according to Reuters news agency, even though this may lead to friction with the Minister of Environment. If it is nevertheless put to a vote in parliament, it is unlikely to get a majority.

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