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People's Daily Online>>China Business

Airlines raise fuel surcharge fees to record level

By Fang Yunyu (Global Times)

09:28, April 05, 2012

Starting today, airline companies will increase fuel surcharge fees for routes in the Chinese mainland by 10 yuan ($1.59) per flight, hitting a record high, as rising oil prices put the aviation industry under pressure.

According to the new standard, every passenger will have to pay an 80 yuan fuel surcharge for flights of less than 800 kilometers, and 150 yuan for longer flights, instead of the previous 70 yuan and 140 yuan, respectively.

Earlier last month, the country's top economic planning agency, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), announced a rise in the price of jet fuel by 260 yuan to 7,769 yuan per ton.

Under the current pricing system, airlines are allowed to raise the fuel surcharge if the price of jet fuel goes up by more than 250 yuan per ton.

"China's fuel surcharge fees follow international jet fuel prices, which have kept on rising recently," Lin Boqiang, director of the Center for Energy Economics Research at Xiamen University, told the Global Times yesterday.

But Lin said the new surcharge raise would not have a big impact for most passengers.

"Airline companies sometimes offer big discounts, and 10 yuan for every passenger is acceptable," said Lin.

Zhao Jie, a Beijing citizen, echoed Lin's view, telling the Global Times yesterday that he was not bothered about the fuel surcharge rise.

"But as a car driver and a taxi passenger, I feel uncomfortable with the continuous increases in gasoline and diesel prices," Zhao said.

The NDRC announced in March that it would raise the official gasoline and diesel prices by 600 yuan per ton, effective from March 20, due to the steep recent rise in international oil prices.

Car drivers, therefore, have seen gasoline prices rise by 0.44 yuan per liter, and diesel by 0.51 yuan per liter.

In response, starting from this month, the taxi fuel surcharges have also risen in some cities.

In Beijing, it has risen to three yuan from two yuan, and applies to any taxi fare for more than three kilometers.

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