Agreement in principle to allow airlines to have carbon emission fee — Anthony Loke

The Transport Ministry (MOT) has reached an agreement in principle to allow airlines to impose additional fees to cover their carbon emission, said Transport Minister Anthony Loke.

He said certain airlines would adopt the fee to purchase sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) while others will pay carbon credit to offset their carbon emission.

“So in short, yes, Malaysia will also take certain steps but at this point of time it will not be mandatory for all airlines,” Loke told reporters after the ministry’s ‘Sua Kasih MADANI’ programme held here yesterday (Friday).

He was asked to comment on Singapore’s decision to impose green fuel levy on flights from 2026 and whether Malaysia would undertake a similar decision.

He said as far as Malaysia is concerned, airlines are encouraged to adapt SAF, however it comes with a cost.

“… so some airlines have written to the ministry, to request to be allowed to make certain changes for carbon levy, but that is not mandatory for airlines,” he said.

Loke said airlines are yet to start the levy as there would be certain amendments made under the Malaysian Aviation Consumer Protection Code 2016 by Malaysian Aviation Commision (Mavcom).

“It will come with a very minimal cost. Firstly our objective is not to burden the consumer, but on the other hand we have this obligation, that every country must fulfil this obligation on carbon reduction.”

While raising concern that it is important to balance between obligation and consumers, Loke said that imposing too much levy would ‘kill’ the industry and discourage people from flying, as well as the economy.

“… so we are making a balancing act while we understand the burden faced by airlines to reduce carbon emission but at the same time, we also do not want to burden passengers. So even if there are charges imposed by airlines, it must be very minimal,” he said.

Loke added that while MOT allows airlines to adopt different approaches to cover carbon emission besides the carbon levy, he emphasised other measures need to be taken as well, such as optimising the airlines’ operational efficiency and air traffic management. — BERNAMA / pic MEDIA MULIA