By Daniel Hunter

Today's move by the Chinese aviation authorities to forbid payment of the EU-imposed carbon emissions tax risks further damage to an already fragile economic recovery, according to the Institute of Directors.

China points out that Europe's ETS (emissions trading scheme), on which the taxes are based, has still to gain endorsement within the UN framework on climate control and the International Civil Aviation Organisation. China, understandably, condemns the tax as a “trade barrier in the name of environmental protection”.

“Today's announcement is a warning to the EU and UK that poorly-conceived taxes will have unforeseen consequences," Simon Walker Director General of the Institute of Directors, said.

"Business depends on good connections to high growth markets and a healthy flow of passengers between those markets. An assault on flying simply means that Europe will be deprived of much-needed trade and investment opportunities, as it is already missing out on increased tourist traffic.

“Excessive taxes hit leisure travellers, families and business passengers equally. Governments have exploited aviation traffic, and their avarice now risks taxing airlines out of the sky."

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