Opposition FDP politician calls for delaying CO2 price due to coronavirus
The economic crisis caused in Germany by the coronavirus has led to first calls to postpone the country's CO2 price for heating and transport, which is scheduled to enter into force next year. Gerald Ullrich, a parliamentarian from the opposition pro-business FDP party, told the newswire dpa it would be "irresponsible" to start charging 25 euros per tonne from 2021 and 55 euros by 2025 given the economic slump. "Every economist knows that tax increases are fundamentally wrong in an economic crisis," Ullrich said according to a report carried by Focus magazine. He called on the government to postpone the introduction to save jobs in the country, adding that CO2 emissions would go down anyway because of the corona crisis.
The CO2 price covering the transport and buildings sectors is a major element of Germany's climate action package agreed last year to ensure that the country can reach its 2030 climate targets. With the exception of aviation, these sectors are not currently covered by the existing European Emissions Trading System (ETS), which sets limits on carbon emissions from the energy sector and heavy industry.