The government is considering taxing the most expensive airline tickets. After the “superprofits” of motorway concessionaires or the fuel for private jets, the executive is digging a new track to finance the 100 billion euro plan intended to renovate the SNCF network and announced by the Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne, end of February. “The ecological transition and the modal transfer from the plane to the train must also go through this kind of device, explains the entourage of Clément Beaune, Minister of Transport, quoted by Le Parisien. A priori, a person who already pays a very high price for his ticket is less sensitive to the price”.
The tax, which will a priori concern first class and business tickets, should appear in the finance bill, debated next fall in the National Assembly and bring in around “one hundred million euros over the period 2023 -2027”, according to the Ministry of Transport. By way of comparison, the government hopes to recover “several billions” with the tax on superprofits from motorway concessionaires. As for Air France, which has just published a negative net result of 344 million euros in the 1st quarter of 2023, it is emphasized that France is “the country which already taxes airlines the most”. The airline claims that the funds raised are used “for the decarbonization of the sector” and warns the government that, otherwise, “we will be falling far behind in our decarbonization objective.”
As a reminder, in 2020, carriers had already suffered an increase in the solidarity tax on plane tickets, known as the “Chirac tax”, created in 2005 during the second term of the former President of the Republic. At the time, this environmental tax had increased from 9 to 18 euros for these same business class tickets and from 1.5 to 3 euros for economy class flights and was to bring in some 182 million euros per year.