In Switzerland, the taxation of electric cars is underway. The only solution to compensate for the losses linked to the transition to zero-emission cars, this solution could make children.
What EV owners feared most is about to happen. Governments may well decide to tax zero-emission cars in the same way they tax owners of internal combustion cars. The first country to seriously address the issue: Switzerland. The federal government is considering a way to compensate for the shortfall that will result from the transition to electric. Indeed, in Switzerland, as in France, the motorist is taxed on his use of the car, but also on his fuel consumption. These levies are used to finance road infrastructure, that is to say essentially road maintenance. In detail, the Swiss system provides for three sources of taxation:
- Taxes and surcharges on mineral oils
- Automobile taxes (upon purchase)
- The obligatory sticker
In the end, these receipts weigh for approximately two billion euros per year. But with the scheduled advent of the electric car, which is leading to a massive reduction in the use of fuel, this amount is bound to drop sharply.
Rethink car taxation
This is why the Swiss Federal Council has asked the Federal Department for the Environment, Transport and Energy (DETEC) and the Federal Department of Finance (FDF) to propose new measures more consistent with the evolution of the car fleet. The objective: a complete assessment of current automobile taxation and concrete proposals from 2023 to switch to a new system.
However, if the reflection has barely started, the Federal Council seems to have already decided on one point. Electric cars will indeed be taxed, and this before 2030. Indeed, the executive body of the Confederation not only announces its decision, but also the method that will be applied. Switzerland will opt for the kilometric index. Translate: the more you drive, the more you pay.
And in France ?
How long will the ideas of the Swiss federal councilors take to cross the Alps? In reality, reflection on the subject has already begun in France. For the moment, the public authorities are partly financing the energy transition, mainly via the ecological bonus. But as the share of electric vehicles will catch up with that of combustion engines, the government’s attitude will change. Why such a difference with Switzerland? Probably because the automotive industry is less present there. But also because the transition seems less engaged. Indeed, the best-selling car among our neighbors since the beginning of the year is the Tesla Model 3. In France? The podium is made up of the Peugeot 208, the new Clio and the Dacia Sendero, and even if the first has a 100% electric version, it is not the one that monopolizes the first place in the ranking.
Even if the question has not yet been asked, there is little doubt that automobile taxation could be debated again in France. And for good reason, the TICPE (domestic consumption tax on energy products) is the fourth source of state revenue, behind income tax, corporate tax and VAT. A reflection is necessary and, finally, it seems logical.
The Automotive Magazine
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