Ryanair has won a legal battle against the Hungarian authorities, who imposed a fine of €300m over the "excess profit" tax of €10 per passenger levied during the Covid pandemic.
The Metropolitan Court of Budapest has overturned the decision and annulled the fine, stating that Ryanair was within its rights to pass on government taxes to its customers and adding that the airline's procedural rights had been "violated".
This ruling is in line with EU law, which gives airlines the liberty to set their charges and levy retrospective taxes on passengers.
Ryanair's chief legal officer, Juliusz Komorek, welcomed the move and called on the Hungarian Justice Minister to apologise for her comments on the bogus fine.
The airline has continued to boost its traffic to/from Hungary while continuing to provide low-cost air travel to Hungarian citizens and visitors to the country.
This legal victory for Ryanair provides clarity to airlines operating in Hungary by further enshrining their rights to set prices and apportion taxes to customers as they see fit. The ruling could increase Ryanair's traffic and spur other airlines to follow suit.
Questions & Answers
What was the €300m fine imposed on Ryanair in Hungary?
Ryanair was not fined €300m in Hungary. The article refers to a fine of €763,000 raised by the Hungarian CPA after Ryanair passed the Hungarian Govt’s “excess profit” tax of €10 per departing passenger to consumers.
What was Ryanair's response to the fine imposed by the Hungarian CPA?
Ryanair condemned the “excess profit” tax and called the Hungarian CPA fine politically motivated.
What was the ruling of the Metropolitan Court of Budapest regarding the fine imposed on Ryanair?
The Metropolitan Court of Budapest annulled the fine and confirmed that Ryanair could lawfully pass on the "excess profit" tax to consumers. The Hungarian Court’s ruling is in line with EU law, which guarantees all airlines the freedom to set prices and pass on retrospective taxes to consumers.
What did Ryanair's Chief Legal Officer say about the Hungarian Court's ruling?
Ryanair’s Chief Legal Officer, Juliusz Komorek, welcomed the ruling and called it absurd that the Hungarian Govt imposed the "excess profits" tax of €10 per departing passenger when all EU airlines were losing money due to Covid.
What does Ryanair plan to do after the Hungarian Court's ruling?
Ryanair continues to invest in Hungary, and the clarity provided by this Hungarian Court ruling will help the company continue to invest and grow its traffic in Hungary for the benefit of Hungarian citizens, their families, and the Hungarian tourism industry.