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Electric Vehicles To Pay Road User Charges

The coalition Government is confirming that the exemption from road user charges (RUC) for owners of light electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrids will end from 1 April, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.

“Petrol tax and distance-based RUC are paid by road users to contribute to the costs of maintaining our roads, but EVs and plug-in hybrids have been exempted from RUC. Transitioning EVs and plug-in hybrids to RUC is the first step in delivering on the National-ACT coalition commitment to bring all vehicles into the RUC system.

“This transition to RUC is about fairness and equity. It will ensure that all road users are contributing the upkeep and maintenance of our roads, irrespective of the type of vehicle they choose to drive.

“Plug-in hybrids are powered by electricity and petrol and have had to pay petrol tax, but not to the same level as petrol equivalent vehicles. To ensure that plug-in hybrids avoid paying twice through both fuel excise duty and RUCs, these vehicles will pay a reduced rate RUC.

“The previous National Government exempted EVs from paying RUC to encourage their uptake. This exemption was always intended to end when EVs hit around two per cent of the light vehicle fleet and we’re now at that point.

"With the increasing uptake of EVs and plug-in hybrids being brought into the RUC system, this means that these vehicles will now be contributing towards the maintenance and upkeep of our roading system like all other road users and will support the Government’s priority of building and maintaining our roading network.”

Owners of light EVs and plug-in hybrids will need to buy a RUC licence from 1 April. There will be a two-month transition period to allow time for people to get registered in the RUC system without being penalised for unpaid RUC.

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