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IATA backs Malaysia's decision to introduce airline carbon fee

Publish date: Sun, 14 Apr 2024, 11:18 AM

KUALA LUMPUR: The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is supportive of Malaysia's decision to introduce airline carbon fee as the country move towards achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

IATA regional vice president for Asia Pacific Philip Goh said the aviation body also supports Malaysia's move to give pricing flexibility on the carbon fee to airlines.

"We support the Malaysian government's approach of giving full pricing flexibility to each airline to fund their own decarbonisation and environmental activities," he told Business Times recently.

Goh said the introduction of a carbon fee and the amount to be charged are commercial decisions best left to individual airlines to decide given that the carriers have various operational and commercial factors to consider when deciding on the fee.

Some of the factors include the costs related to the compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) programme and other decarbonisation efforts.

"IATA has had positive engagements with Malaysia's Ministry of Transport (MoT) and appreciates MoT's collaborative approach in the development of government policies on sustainability," Goh said.

Transport Minister Anthony Loke had recently announced that airlines in Malaysia could introduce carbon fee surcharge to their passengers as early as April this year.

He said the airlines would have to have a very transparent mechanism to show how they spend the fee collected, while adding that the fee is not a tax collection by the government.

On March 4, Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) told Business Times that the carbon fee is optional and is up to local and international airlines' flying in and out of Malaysia to implement it.

"This scheme is a crucial aspect of decarbonisation strategy and is a significant step towards achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050," Mavcom spokesperson said.

Malaysia's move to implement the optional carbon fee collection comes after Singapore announced a sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) levy to airlines and travellers to purchase the alternative fuel.

Currently, only Malaysia Airlines Bhd is using blended SAF for its flights.

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