IATA blasted the German government for planning to implement a departure tax on airlines.
Germany is positioning the measure as an environmental tax that is expected to vary according to noise levels and fuel consumption. The country expects the tax to raise 1 billion euros annually.
IATA CEO Giovanni Bisignani called it a "cash grab."
"This is the worst kind of short-sighted policy irresponsibility," he said. "It’s a cash grab by a cash-strapped government. Painting it green adds insult to injury. There will be no environmental benefit from the economic damage caused."
Bisignani said that the Netherlands tried to raise 300 million euros per year with a similar tax enacted in 2008, but repealed it a year later because traffic fell at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport.
IATA and airlines also reacted harshly to a U.K. hike in its air passenger duty, which was spun as an environmental measure, as well. The first phase of that increase went into effect in November, increasing the tax from 40 British pounds to 45 pounds for coach passengers traveling to the U.S.
This November, the U.K.’s air passenger duty is scheduled to increase to 60 pounds for coach travelers to the U.S.