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Trucking Industry UK

Hauliers must be consulted over road pricing plans

The UK's HGV market accelerates 12.9% in 2021 to defy supply challenge, says SMMT.

Hauliers must be involved with any plans to introduce a pay-as-you-go driving scheme, Logistics UK says.

The warning comes after MPs on the Transport Committee said the government needs to reform motoring taxation by bringing in road pricing using telematics technology.

They say that with the growing trend towards electric vehicles (EVs), the country’s road tax revenue of around £35 billion a year from vehicle excise duty and fuel duty will disappear by 2050.

The committee has now published its report on road pricing, and they say that a new system to charge drivers and lorries according to the distances driven, and which also include the time of day and vehicle type, must be considered.

Hauliers to be involved in road pricing scheme

However, Logistics UK says that there should be no double tax on motoring and that hauliers will need to be involved in planning any road pricing scheme.

The organisation’s head of public policy, Michelle Gardner, said: “As the logistics industry transitions to zero tailpipe emission vehicles at pace, Logistics UK is urging the government to involve the sector as it decides the future of motoring tax.

“Any new charging system, such as road pricing, must be fair, proportionate, and provide businesses with the certainty they need to plan their long-term investments into alternative fuelled vehicles. 

“As the Transport Committee identified, road charging must replace rather than add to existing motoring taxes and be revenue neutral to limit the financial burden placed on logistics businesses, with all investment going back into road maintenance and improvement.”

The committee’s report has been welcomed by the Road Haulage Association highlights that hauliers will be among those concerned about the different charging schemes being introduced around the country and that a national scheme should be unveiled so businesses can invest in vehicles confident of enjoying a full life cycle.

‘Honest conversation on motoring taxes’

The Chair of the Transport Committee, Huw Merriman MP, said: “It’s time for an honest conversation on motoring taxes. 

“The Government’s plans to reach net zero by 2050 are ambitious. Zero emission vehicles are part of that plan. 

“However, the resulting loss of two major sources of motor taxation will leave a £35 billion black hole in finances unless the Government acts now – that’s 4% of the entire tax-take.”

He added: “Only £7 billion of this goes back to the roads; schools and hospitals could be impacted if motorists don’t continue to pay.”

Technology to deliver a national road-pricing scheme

The Transport Committee wants to use innovative technology to deliver a national road-pricing scheme which prices up a journey based on the amount of road distance travelled the time, plus the type of vehicle, used.

Mr Merriman said: “By offering choice, we can deliver for the driver and for the environment. 

“Road pricing should not cost motorists more, overall, or undermine progress on active travel.”

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