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MEDIA RELEASE - 10 December 2020

GET backs Infrastructure Victoria’s vision for zero-waste and emissions but calls for re-think on distance-based charging

Global Electric Transport (GET) – the Victorian-based provider of electric vehicle charging infrastructure in Australia – has backed Infrastructure Victoria’s 30-year blueprint which aims to help Victoria address existing infrastructure pressures and better prepare for the future.

The draft plan contains 95 recommendations, the first of which is aimed to accelerate the uptake of zero emissions vehicles, in part by requiring all new public transport buses and coaches, and government vehicle fleets, to transition to zero emissions vehicles where available. The plan also recommends incentivising zero emission freight vehicles and develop design standards and payment principles for charging infrastructure.

“Infrastructure Victoria is to be commended for recognising the inevitability of electric vehicles and advocating for building charging stations, as well as the need to collect revenue from a steadily growing base of EV drivers,” said GET CEO Harry Hamann.

“However, Infrastructure Victoria needs to rethink its recommendation for a distance-based method of charging EV drivers to use road transport infrastructure, which we feel is a backward step, as well as being an inefficient, inequitable, unfair, and too costly method of administering and collecting such a levy. There is also the matter of the likely method of recording distance – a logbook – being open to misuse, abuse and inaccuracy.”

Hamann said an electricity charge-based tax is a much simpler and fairer method of collecting revenue from electric vehicle drivers and has many similarities with the longstanding federal fuel excise system, which has several distinct positive features.

“Just as the fuel excise is collected at the bowser, withheld by the fuel provider and remitted to the ATO, a charge-based tax facilitated by the technology we deploy with our GET charging stations and app is a more seamless and less expensive way of collecting revenue,” Hamann said.

“It also mitigates any possibility of the excise being avoided, as well as removing compliance costs by vehicle owners and rendering ATO administration costs minimal, if not non-existent. None of those positive features will be derived from a per kilometre tax, but all of them will be evident if a levy on EV owners is incorporated into the cost of charging their vehicles.

“Notwithstanding this isolated flaw in the plan, it is certainly encouraging that Infrastructure Victoria has put the early adoption of electric vehicles and the phasing out of petrol and diesel cars within 30 years or sooner at the very top of its list of recommendations to the Victorian Government,” Hamann said. Ends…

For further information, contact Brian O’Neil on 0411 055 284.

 

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