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Sweden offers carriers airport charge deferment

TT/The Local · 22 Apr 2010, 18:45

Published: 22 Apr 2010 15:33 GMT+02:00
Updated: 22 Apr 2010 18:45 GMT+02:00

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Airlines will also be given a three-month exemption from paying airport fees. Each month carriers pay Swedish airport charges amounting to around 250 million kronor.

Olofsson said the government was in talks with the European Union and was pushing for a retroactive EU-wide moratorium on airport fees for the period in which a cloud of volcanic ash caused aviation authorities to shut down airspace across much of the continent.

The government also reminded airlines at home of the continued existence of a scheme put in place at the height of the global financial crisis enabling companies to defer payment of sales tax, employer charges and other staff-related taxes.

"It's going to relieve the pressure," Olofsson told reporters at a Thursday afternoon press conference.

Enterprise ministry staff said airlines could save millions of kronor a day and resolve acute liquidity problems by making use of support systems already in place.

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"We've just informed them that they can avail themselves of this possibility," said Leif Zetterberg, state secretary to transport minister Åsa Torstensson.

Zetterberg said the airlines did not know this opportunity was available to them.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

16:34 April 22, 2010 by Nora
Is Iceland gonna pay for this?!!
17:01 April 22, 2010 by koshka
Sounds like some additional state aid for SAS with other airlines happening to benefit at the same time.
17:05 April 22, 2010 by teslar
The German Spiegel had an article a few days ago saying that this is a bad idea, for two reasons (I'm summarising and paraphrasing here):

1. If you support the airlines, you also need to support every other business that has lost some money as a result of the flight restrictions, including importers of goods etc. If you don't do that, it is very easy to attack the government for brown-nosing big industries while not caring about the little man.

2. If a few days without income puts a company into crisis, there are larger issues that need to be tackled. Or should the government shell out some dough every time a company has a setback?
17:22 April 22, 2010 by old git
Another about turn by another Minister - what was your headline on April 20th again? something about "Enterprise Minister says no to airline bailout"?
19:03 April 22, 2010 by Bensonradar

Good point. Unlike American where failing airlines go to the wall with the associated loss of jobs to staff and orders to suppliers, and the lack of tax income to federal government, Sweden takes a more interventionist role.

However, SAS Group is partially owned by the governments of Sweden, Denmark and Norway, with a 21%, 14% and 14% ownership, respectively with the remaining 50% are held by private owners. So there is an element of Scandinavian governments not wanting to lose political credibility and hence votes and, letting the airline collapse, will trigger this.

Priorities dictate the Nordic companies that receive government support - Banks, airlines and car manufacturers so far seem to receive instant help.

Smaller companies, added together, employ the majority of workers but usually do not get any help, unless they have powerful unions that can lobby government.

While interventionist policies will benefit larger companies in the short to medium term, SAS needs to get its house in order and become more customer-friendly and efficient.
07:42 April 23, 2010 by Adam116
Unlike Americans, Unlike Americans. I love how Swedes are so patriotic and compare everything to America. Sweden has 8 million people and is the size of California. America has 300 million people and has 50 states. The small area of New York City alone has more people than Sweden.

When there is a problem in America, it's not so easy to fix because it affects too many people. Of course in a socialist country like Sweden, problems like this can easily be dealt with because of the high taxes and government support.

But Sweden didn't always have such high taxes. In the 50's up until 1975 was prosperous. 49/50 of the major economic companies in Sweden were made before 1975. Taxes were around 10%. Now these companies can't support the economy anymore and taxes are increased and will continue to increase until the country can't open up any more business because entrapreneurs simply can't afford it unless they are making 250% profits on their goods.

So stop comparing all the time. Please. Your the only socialist country that is still alive due to these companies. Look at the other ones in the world... The system didn't work and neither will Sweden's. Just a matter of time.
21:16 April 23, 2010 by Purisai

Amen brother! You hit it right on!!
13:24 April 28, 2010 by basta2010
hahahaha u crazy!!!!how some one can pay for nature and whai island?? that indian ocean pay to tihland for tsunami or any earth cwake was payt by country think think people the mother nature have inuf of üpolution and distraction from people so is givin berck and make balance for her self so simple!!!!!dont be greedy!!what haapen if nord pol will melt and sweedish ice and snow will melt and make the water around the world sweeden will pay for it???i think is time to think difrent this time new age is coming we must start make clean energy not darf polutiobn oil stuff!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!no one control nature any gaverment cant do it is usluse money is rong!!!!!
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