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30 Aug 2019, 15:19
Freja Eriksen

MPs from Germany's conservative party CSU want extra tax on cheapest European flights

[UPDATE: The CSU's secretary general has rejected the idea of new or increased taxes.]

Bild Zeitung / Tagesschau

MPs from the conservative German government coalition party Christian Social Union (CSU) have proposed an extra tax on cheap flight tickets within Europe, reports newspaper Bild Zeitung, citing a paper developed for a meeting of the CSU, the Bavarian sister party of Chancellor Angela Merkel's CDU. Airlines "that offer flight tickets under 50 euros will have to pay a competitive price tax in the future," Alexander Dobrindt, head of the CSU in the Bundestag, told the newspaper. With the aim of climate protection, Dobrindt argued for introducing a minimum price for air travel and reducing the value-added tax on rail travel.
Hours after the news broke, CSU secretary general Markus Blume told Tagesschau: "This is not a proposal coordinated within the CSU. The CSU is a party that lowers taxes, not one that increases them." The party would decide its climate action package at a meeting at the end of next week. 

With emissions in the sector rising fast, air traffic has become a focus of public attention in Germany and across Europe. The German government recently initiated a strategy for climate-friendly aviation, signing a declaration together with industry and union representatives stating that industrial policy should focus on electric and hybrid electric aviation and market introduction of competitive alternative fuels.

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