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Photo taken on December 18, 2011 shows an Airbus A380 landing in Beijing/XINHUA

Focus on China

Airbus backs China’s opposition to EU carbon tax

Photo taken on December 18, 2011 shows an Airbus A380 landing in Beijing/XINHUA

BEIJING, Jun 13 – Airbus fully supports China’s stance in opposing the European Union’s plan to tax international airlines under its Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), one of the company’s executives said on Tuesday.

John Leahy, a chief operating officer at Airbus, said Airbus shared China’s stance on the matter and believes that the EU practice is improper even though the ETS was designed to reduce carbon emissions, The EU began charging airlines that use EU airports for carbon emissions on January 1.

The first payment is due on April 30, 2013.

The EU’s move is unacceptable to other countries and must be corrected, Leahy said at the 68th annual conference of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

Leahy said a global solution under the framework of the International Civil Aviation Organization should be worked out.
Chinese and US aviation authorities and industry associations have repeatedly voiced opposition to the ETS, urging the EU to take a global and comprehensive approach to the issue.

Tony Tyler, chief executive and director-general of IATA, said the administration is calling on the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), a UN agency, to finalise a global solution to reduce carbon emissions in the aviation industry.

The EU’s carbon charges are not a step forward, but a move that could trigger disputes or even a trade war in the industry, Tyler said.

Airbus, which delivered about 20 percent of its products to China last year, will continue to take the country as an important civil aviation market, according to Leahy. The company plans to deliver more than 100 aircraft to the Chinese market this year.

Leahy said Airbus’s goal is to provide the market with more efficient aircraft that consume less fuel and create less noise and pollution.

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With its new engine, the company’s A320neo aircraft consumes 15 percent less fuel than the previous A320, Leahy said.

Global aircraft giants, including Boeing, Embraer and the China Aviation Industry Corporation, are all working on more fuel-efficient and lighter aircraft to reduce weight, noise and carbon emissions.

Li Jian, deputy director of the Civil Aviation Administration of China, said new technology will play an important role in the future development of the civil aviation industry.


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