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EU airlines push back on green tax citing coronavirus

PARIS, March 12 (Reuters) - European governments should agree to the "deferment or waiver" of new environmental taxes on aviation to help the sector recover from the coronavirus travel slump, Europe's biggest airlines said in a statement on Thursday.

"New fiscal burdens should be postponed until the industry is back on a sound operational and financial footing," the Airlines for Europe group said.

It cited as an example EU energy taxation rules under which aviation fuel is currently exempt.

The group also called for the relaxation of re-routing and passenger compensation requirements and reiterated calls for a waiver of current rules requiring airlines to give up airport slots if their usage falls below 80%.

(Reporting by Laurence Frost; editing by Jason Neely)