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People's Daily Online>>Opinion

Developing countries' interests should not be sacrificed

By Zhong Sheng (People's Daily)

16:37, February 13, 2012

Edited and translated by People's Daily Online

The European Union's imposition of carbon emissions tax on airlines was opposed by multiple nations and some countries are considering measures to hit back at the E.U. There are worries about that the E.U.'s unilateral practice will disturb the international air market.

The imposition of the carbon emissions tax is not only an issue concerning environmental protection, economy, but one concerning politics. The establishment of any environmental protection standard should give consideration to the interests of developing countries and adhere to the "Common but Differentiated Responsibilities Principle" commonly followed by the international community in the climate change field. Requiring other economies to pay aviation carbon emissions taxes by taking advantage of their own comparative advantages is actually strangling the development of developing countries' aviation industry.

The Free Annual Quota in the E.U. aviation carbon emissions tax is also very deceptive. As the aviation industry in E.U. countries is already very mature, the E.U.'s distribution of the free emissions quota according to past emissions means that the E.U.'s aviation industries can enjoy the benefits of free quotas to the maximum.

However, developing countries started late in the aviation industry despite of rapid development. These countries saw less carbon emissions in history, and if they want to enjoy development in their aviation industry, they have to pay a large amount of carbon emissions tax, which is obviously unfair.

The International Civil Aviation Organization has already proposed to put forward a global carbon emissions trade system in 2014. This is a right way to solve the international aviation carbon emissions problem through negotiation under the multilateral frame instead of imposing one's own principle on others. No matter the final standard will be, respecting developing countries' rights to development is a standard to be followed.

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