After the Netherlands, Belgium will propose to its European Union partners to introduce a European taxation on commercial aviation, newspaper Le Soir reports this Saturday. It could be either a tax on aviation fuel, currently exempt from any tax, or a VAT on airline tickets.
The discussion will take place at the Council of Environment Ministers next Tuesday, at the request of the new Flemish Minister for the Environment Koen Van den Heuvel. In a note given to its partners, the Belgian delegation recommends “a fair and correct pricing of air transport with regard to its impact on the environment. There is currently no taxation on kerosene or VAT on tickets More environment-friendly modes of transport such as railways are more taxed than air transport.”
The European discussions will allow “the next European Commission to make adequate proposals,” hopes Walloon Environment Minister Jean-Luc Crucke. Belgium is thus part of an initiative launched by France and The Netherlands.
In any case, it will be difficult to go alone, given the competition with neighbouring countries where low-cost airlines could base their aircraft.
The decision not to tax aircraft fuel dates back to World War II. At the time, the United States wanted to do anything to develop civil aviation.