SAA to Raise Surcharge to comply with EU Emissions Trading Scheme
Johannesburg, 18 June 2012. South African Airways (SAA) is preparing to raise its fuel surcharge on flights to and from Europe by between 1.00 and 2.00 Euros per passenger on flights booked from 1 July 2012 in order to comply with the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS).
South Africa, along with the US, China, Russia, Australia and India, signaled its opposition to the EU ETS, in a treaty signed in Delhi last October and over the last few weeks urged the EU to negotiate changes which would make the scheme fair and transparent.
“We fully support Government’s proposal that the EU suspend its ETS for two years so that a globally acceptable and equitable solution can be reached through negotiation at the UN’s International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), which is the body mandated to set and implement global civil aviation standards and regulations,” explained SAA CEO, Siza Mzimela.
“At the same time, as a responsible airline, we are taking steps to comply with the EU ETS, but we are doing this under protest. This will ensure that SAA can continue providing air services to London, Frankfurt and Munich without disruption or sanction,” added Mzimela.
Under the EU ETS, airlines are allotted a quota of carbon credits, which they use to offset the emission charges. However, the allotted credits will only cover about 80% of all airlines emissions claims in 2012, leaving the airlines to purchase additional credits to cover the balance of the emissions charges they will incur.
In the ETS’ current form, the EU effectively charges airlines on their emissions over the entire distance of their flight to and from the EU, regardless of the distance or portion of the flight in EU airspace. For example, in the case of flights linking South Africa with Europe, only about 15 percent of the journey takes place in EU airspace – but the entire flight from Johannesburg will be taxed.
SAA will seek to mitigate the impact of such taxes on its customers by implementing fuel-saving and carbon-emissions reductions initiatives.
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South African Airways (SAA) is the leading carrier in Africa, serving 20 destinations across the continent, as well as major destinations within South Africa, from its hub, Johannesburg. It is a member of the largest international airline network, Star Alliance. SAA’s core business is the provision of passenger airline and cargo transport services together with related services, which are provided through SAA and its four wholly owned subsidiaries: SAA Technical; Mango its low cost carrier; Air Chefs, the catering entity of SAA and South African Travel Centre (SATC). SAA CEO Siza Mzimela is the first woman to be appointed into the IATA Board of Directors in its 67 year history. SAA is the winner of the 'Best Airline in Africa’ Award in the regional category for 9 consecutive years and the winner of ‘Service Excellence Africa’ for two consecutive years. Mango and SAA hold the number one and number two consecutive spots as South Africa’s most on time airlines.