Published on Thursday, February 18, 2021

New Zealand departure tax proposed by Environmental Commission

New Zealand's Environment Commission is calling for a new departure tax to pay for environmental works to mitigate climate change.

In a new report Commissioner Simon Upton proposed a departure tax on all outbound flights.

Tourism Minister Stuart Nash said the government will study the report but it is too early to respond, especially in the middle of a global pandemic.

Upton said the aviation industry should fund environmental works due to the carbon footprint of flying internationally.

"There is broad support for the idea that protecting tourism livelihoods in the short term should not morph into a slow but inexorable return to the status quo in the long term," Upton said.

Revenue raised would help fund the development of lower emissions technology in aviation.

As a general guide, the report suggested a lower band rate of about $60 in tax for a long haul flight to the UK or NZ$6 for a short trans-Tasman flight to Eastern Australia, althoigh it would likely be more.

It suggests a departure tax could bring in up to NZ$400m annually.


Written by Ray Montgomery, Asia Editor

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