- Daily & Weekly newsletters
- Buy & download The Bulletin
- Comment on our articles
Proposal to cancel flights between Brussels and Amsterdam
CD&V have tabled a proposal in the federal parliament to limit or abolish short-haul flights in and out of Brussels Airport. The proposal follows the Netherlands’ resolution to cancel flights between Amsterdam and Brussels.
Yesterday, it was reported that the Dutch House of Representatives has called on its government to enter talks with Belgian authorities about banning flights between their capital cities. With check-in, take-off and landing, passengers actually lose time flying compared to taking the train. With the train being significantly more environmentally friendly, the House finds no reason to continue flights.
The federal economy minister and Brussels’ environment minister both responded positively. Economy minister Didier Gosuin (Défi) told Bruzz that “flights over short distances are completely irrational,” while Brussels minister Céline Fremault (CDH) said that Belgium should get busy promoting train travel. “That’s why ensuring a democratic price for the train is crucial,” she said.
Today, CD&V parliamentarian Vincent Van Peteghem submitted a proposal with a number of suggestions, including that a research project be launched into how short-haul flights could be replaced by train routes, how to improve the infrastructure to allow more high-speed train travel and fiscal solidarity on a European level.
Groen supports the proposal, suggesting that distances of less than 1,000 kilometres should cost the same or less in a train than on a plane. “This economic model of low-cost air tickets isn’t sustainable,” said Groen MP Stefaan Van Hecke. “We are all paying for it in other ways.” He wants to move away from “flea market prices” and asks for “fair competition” for the rail system.