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An increasing number of Member States levy CO2-based taxation or incentivise electric vehicles


22 Apr 2010



Brussels, 21/04/2010 - At present, seventeen EU Member States levy

CO2-related taxes on passenger cars. Fifteen governments provide tax

incentives for electrically chargeable vehicles. In 2009, motor vehicle

taxes in the EU 15 amounted to €377 billion or 3.4% of GDP.

This  information  can be found in the European Automobile Manufacturers’

Association  Tax  Guide 2010, of which highlights were published today on

Tax incentives

The  seventeen  EU  countries  that levy passenger car taxes partially or

totally  based  on  the  car’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and/or fuel

consumption  are:  Austria,  Belgium,  Cyprus,  Denmark, Finland, France,

Germany,  Ireland,  Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal,

Romania, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

By  April  last  year, sixteen Member States had CO2-related taxation, up

from  fourteen  in 2008, eleven in 2007 and nine in 2006. New to the list

are  Germany,  that  introduced  such  system  in the summer of 2009, and

Latvia.  Italy  chose  not  to  prolong its one-year fleet renewal scheme

which  included  both  CO2-based  incentives  and incentives for electric


Incentives  for  electrically  chargeable vehicles are now applied in all

western  European  countries with the exceptions of Italy and Luxembourg.

New  to  the  list  is  Belgium.  The Czech Republic and Romania take the

number  of  Member States up to fifteen. The incentives mainly consist of

tax  reductions  and  exemptions,  as  well  as of bonus payments for the

buyers of electric vehicles.

Industry welcomes trend

The European car industry supports the further introduction of the fiscal

incentives  for  fuel  efficiency.  Tax measures are an important tool in

shaping  consumer  demand  towards fuel-efficient cars, and help create a

market  for  breakthrough  technologies,  notably during the introduction

phase. Innovations generally first enter the market in low volumes and at

a  significant  cost  premium,  and this needs to be offset by a positive

policy framework.

Electric  mobility  will  make an important contribution towards ensuring

sustainable   mobility.   However,  advanced  conventional  technologies,

engines and fuels will further play a predominant role for years to come.

Governments must continue to include these CO2-efficient technologies and

solutions in their overall sustainable mobility policy approach.

Need for harmonisation

Failure  to harmonise tax systems weakens the environmental benefits that

CO2-based  taxation  and  incentives  can bring. European automakers have

long  called  for the abolition of car registration taxes which are still

widely  applied  in  the EU. Generally, registration taxes threaten fleet

renewal. A harmonised CO2-based tax regime for cars should be a priority,

applying  a  linear,  technology-neutral system that is budget neutral in

end  effect. It would maximise emission reductions, support manufacturers

and maintain the integrity of the single market.

Note to editors:

In 2009, the market share of cars emitting 120 gCO2/km had risen to 25%.

Cars with emission above 160 gCO2/km accounted for 23% of the market,

compared to 39% in 2006 and to 80% in 1995.

The  annual ACEA Tax Guide gives an overview of motor vehicle taxation in

the  twenty-seven  Member  States of the European Union, the countries of

the  European Free Trade Association as well as Turkey and, for the first

time, Brazil China, India, Japan, Korea, Russia and the United States.

The  Tax  Guide is compiled with the help of the national associations of

motor  vehicle  manufacturers  or  importers  and describes in detail the

taxes that are levied on the sale, registration, ownership and the use of

motor vehicles in each country.

A  summary  is available at Media can obtain the full report

by sending an e-mail to

For further information, please contact Sigrid de Vries, Director

Communications, ACEA   +32 2 738 73 45 or

Please also visit


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