India plans to tax air tickets to fund AIDS programmes as part of a UN sponsored initiative - airlines oppose the tax

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Article
8 September 2006

UNITAIDS: International drug purchase facility

Author: UNITAID

UNITAID’s core principles...based on a new idea: the international air-ticket solidarity levy, a long-term, guaranteed and predictable resource with solid perspectives for growth...Innovative financing mechanism: The solidarity levy is paid when airplane tickets are purchased...To date, 14 countries have expressed their intention to implement the same type of levy: Brazil, Chile, Cyprus, Congo, Gabon, Ivory Coast, France, Jordan, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Mauritius, Nicaragua, Norway and the United Kingdom...[UNITAID is] to fight the three major diseases (HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis).

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Article
5 September 2006

India may tax air tickets to fund AIDS drugs

Author: Jo Johnson, Financial Express

Indian airline operators have warned the government against imposing a levy on air tickets to fund HIV/Aids programmes, part of a new global initiative to broaden access to drugs in development countries. Fourteen countries have pledged to implement the "international air ticket solidarity levy", which was launched by the United Nations...India will be a key beneficiary of an initiative that aims to create scale economies in the purchasing of drugs from global pharmaceutical companies. Its...fast-growing economy also make India's participation in the scheme important...in bringing affordable treatment to other developing countries...[The] Indian airline sector said the government risked stifling the take-up of low-cost air travel and needed first to improve woeful infrastructure before imposing unrelated new taxes on a nascent industry.

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