The Greens, co-governing with the ÖVP, may “punish” Austria’s drivers again from next Saturday: the controversial CO2 tax will come into force, and diesel and petrol prices will rise again immediately. According to ÖAMTC calculations, a liter of diesel will be 9 cents more expensive, and a liter of petrol will be 8 cents more expensive. This means that the complete filling of a 50 liter tank suddenly costs 4.50 euros (diesel) or 4 euros (petrol) more. With three tank fillings a month, commuters now have to pay 13.50 euros more, and the additional monthly costs add up to up to 162 euros per year.
“It was agreed in the coalition agreement: if the climate bonus comes, then the CO2 tax will also come,” explains a Chancellor spokesman, why the ÖVP leader does not want to slow down his small coalition partners: After all, the situation has changed dramatically – the Inflation is already just under 10 percent and basket prices are skyrocketing. A change in this development is not to be expected in the coming months due to the Ukraine conflict and the associated rise in energy prices.
Nevertheless, Chancellor Karl Nehammer does not want to pull the emergency brake: the ÖVP leader does not want to trigger a coalition crisis that would lead to new election debates and thus show a destabilization of the federal government in the middle of the crisis.
The Greens, who now also suffered a dramatic defeat in the elections in Tyrol, are benefiting from this “stability at any price” command: They are thus enforcing an inflation campaign, although many Austrians are already up to their necks in water – and although the vast majority of ÖVP officials reject CO2 taxation.