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German aviation: threats of slow recovery, air taxes and road tunnels

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For one reason or another the aviation spotlight is often on Germany. For many years it was the sad failure to open the new Berlin Brandenburg Airport – a situation that challenged the hitherto renowned concept of German engineering..

But ‘BER’ did eventually open, and now it is leading the way in bringing runways and terminals that it had mothballed back into use.

That is the only good news coming out of Germany right now. The country’s Aviation Association has highlighted the fact that Germany’s pandemic recovery (it is impossible to talk about ‘post-pandemic’ with the emergence of the Omicron variant), as measured by passenger traffic and bookings, lags other European countries. CAPA Data on seat capacity reinforces those concerns.

“Life is what happens while you are making other plans” as Allen Saunders, Henry Cooke, John Lennon and others have reminded us over the years, and while the pandemic rages the new German government is plotting an EU-wide aviation tax on top of the one already in force in Germany.

At the same time a new short tunnel linking Germany and Denmark threatens to undermine the case for international air travel in a country that seems to have developed a passion for long distance car travel.

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