Similar to neighboring countries, Belgium imposes a flight tax on passengers – initially for flights of up to 500 kilometres, such as the KLM between Brussels and Amsterdam.
The federal government headed by Liberal Prime Minister Alexandre de Croo announced this on Tuesday, as part of the new budget. Deputy Prime Minister Petra de Sutter described it as an “internal tax” during a press conference. It is already present in most of our neighboring countries. The additional tax could help travelers make a “paradigm shift” to more sustainable forms of transportation, such as rail,” says de Sutter, a seven-party government member on behalf of Groen. It is not yet clear how high the tax will be and when it will be applied; details have yet to It is being worked on yet.
Initially, the departure tax applies only to flights up to 500 km from Belgian airports; The Belgian government may later extend this to all distances. Within this scope of work are Schiphol, Frankfurt and the airports near Paris and London.
KLM is the only airline that flies between Schiphol and Brussels Airport (Zaventem), with a distance of 200 km. KLM recently reduced road frequency from five to four per day.
The United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands and France, as well as some other European countries, already have some form of flight tax for departing passengers. So far, attempts to come up with a single tax system within Europe have stalled.
In the meantime, the Belgian government wants to encourage its citizens to make more use of the train and allocates 250 million euros for this. This switch in style is not just about getting from plane to train, but Brussels also aims to move more freight by rail. Overall, rail transport to and from Belgium was supposed to double by 2030. “This is good for the climate, good for the economy and road safety,” Mobility Minister George Gilkennet said at the press conference.
Photo by Sergio Otoya on Unsplash
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