Victoria is making headlines after it announced a $3000 subsidy for electric vehicle purchases in the state while setting an ambitious target for the adoption of electric vehicles by 2030.
The confirmation of the $3000 subsidy for electric vehicle purchases is part of the government’s plan to see half of all new vehicle registrations in the form of electric or hydrogen-powered vehicles by 2030.
The Andrews government says the first subsidy packages have already been made available to Victorians, with $3000-worth of support for those looking at purchasing an electric vehicle valued at under $69,000.
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It marks by far the most significant state government support package for the adoption of electric vehicles. Currently, the ACT is in second-place, with low-interest loans and the removal of stamp duty paid on the purchase of an electric car.
The state government says its $100 million pledge underpins this commitment, as well as further investments directed towards electric vehicle charging infrastructure, and a confirmation that government vehicles will soon be all-electric.
The announcement coincided with Victoria’s move to increase its overall emissions target by 2030 from a 45% reduction to 50%, after consultation with its advisory panel.
That panel also recommended that the government spend at least $19 million on electric vehicle charging stations, with plans outlined for 50 charging stations across the state, most prominently nearby highways, tourist hot-spots and within Melbourne’s CBD.
$10 million will be spent on adding electric vehicles to the government fleet, with plans to add 400 all-electric vehicles within the next 24-months. A $5 million fund has also been outlined to accelerate the adoption of EVs in the commercial context.
The Andrews government says this investment package will be funded by legislation advocating for a controversial new road user tax that targets hybrid and pure electric vehicles. If the legislation passes, a road tax of $0.025 cents per kilometer will be applied to electric or zero-emissions vehicles.
Victoria Announces $3000 Subsidy for Electric Vehicle Purchases
The Victorian government says that considering EV owners evade fuel taxes and GST on purchases of petrol and diesel, the government is looking to recoup those losses and fund its subsidy and investment plans.
We’ve reported previously that the chief executive of Australian Industry Group, Innes Wilox amounted the road tax to “putting the cart before the horse,” and said the legislation “should not be implemented until clean vehicles are better established and the taxes are better designed.”
Wilox continued to explain that “road infrastructure needs to be prepared for it, and it will be important in the long term to maintain the tax base as batteries and fuel cells replace petrol tanks in Australia’s vehicle fleet.”
That piece of legislation is set to come into effect from the 1st of July, if it passes the Victorian parliament.
In spite of the criticisms, the Victorian minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, Lily D’Ambrosio has said that “this package of reforms makes cars the vehicle for change, by getting more zero emissions vehicles on our roads.”
“Our transport sector is a significant contributor to our emissions,” she added.
Victorian Treasurer, Tim Pallas added to this, stating that “these investments will encourage more drivers to consider purchasing a zero emissions vehicle – and ensure Victoria leads the nation in zero emissions vehicle uptake.”
The Electric Vehicle Council has issued a statement saying that “we know from surveys that Australians are eager to get behind the wheel of an electric vehicle, they just need to know their governments will back that decision.”
“Policies like this tell Australians that buying an electric vehicle is a choice they can make with confidence. Only 0.1 per cent of Victorian cars are currently electric. The subsidies announced could help drive that figure up sharply and put a huge dent in Victoria’s carbon emissions.”