China has banned all airlines in the country from complying with an EU scheme that charges for carbon emissions from flights into and out of Europe.
Beijing has also barred the airlines from raising fares because of the European plan. Having already denounced the emissions scheme as an unfair trade barrier, this latest government decision comes a week before a China-EU summit.
It is another twist in an international aviation row that has also caused transatlantic turbulence. Last year, the European Court of Justice declared the plan valid, ruling against a challenge from US carriers.
Imposed since the start of January, the scheme is intended to help curb greenhouse gases from aviation, which are adding to global warming. Any airline that does not comply could face fines or even a ban from using EU airports.