Electric cars No Tax in Victoria

Almost half of Victorian voters would prefer to buy an electric car and even more support the introduction of government subsidies, according to a new survey in six key electorates.

The poll of 2000 people has revealed significant cross party support for the electric vehicle industry with almost 80 per cent agreeing it was important for the government to encourage the take up of electric and non-polluting vehicles.

Almost two thirds of those polled also revealed they would like to see cash incentives rolled out to make electric vehicles more affordable.

In November last year Victorian Treasurer Tim Pallas had announced plans to introduce a 2.5 cent/km charge for electric vehicles, and a 2.0 cent/km charge for plug-in hybrids. According to the Andrews Government, the proposed tax is being introduced to ensure EV owners make a fair contribution to funding Victorian roads.

The Electric Vehicle Council said the results clearly demonstrated that the Victorian Government’s plans to introduce a tax on electric vehicle tax was way off track.

“Victorian voters don’t want a tax on electric vehicles, they want their politicians to be driving policies that will allow them to be able to go to a dealership and pick up the keys to an electric vehicle,” said Behyad Jafari, Chief Executive of the Electric Vehicle Council.

“It’s clear the Andrews Government needs to do a complete re-steer.”

The poll conducted in Richmond, Albert Park, Oakleigh, Eltham, Bentleigh and Mordialloc revealed almost 60 per cent of voters revealed they would be more inclined to vote for the Andrews Government if it supported the EV industry.

Around 50 per cent also thought the electric vehicle industry received less support than the traditional motor vehicle industry.

Mr Jafari said: “Victorian voters aren’t stupid. They are seeing what is happening in the rest of the world where the use of electric vehicles is surging due to governments who are actively supporting their roll out.

“If our politicians can’t be swayed by embracing policies that would result in cleaner air and help the state meet its net zero carbon emissions target by 2050, perhaps they might be moved by thinking about re-election and what their voters actually want.”

Key findings

  • Overall, 59.7% said they would be more likely to support the Andrews Government if it got behind electric vehicles. This rose to 73% of Labor party voters and 82% of Green voters.
  • Only 36.1% thought the Andrews Government plan to introduce road taxes for EV users was to make road funding fair. 44.1% thought it was about raising taxes and almost 20 per cent thought it was to benefit petrol and oil companies.
  • 74% of Labor voters wanted cash incentives to make EVs more affordable, an initiative supported by 46% of Liberal and 45% of National voters. 
  • 72.1% said higher taxes on electric cars would lead to a decline in sales.
  • 77.9% of voters want the government to implement policies to encourage people to buy electric vehicles. This rose to 89% of Labor voters and 93% of Green supporters. 

Kosmos Samaras, of RedBridge polling which conducted the survey, said politicians would be wise to take note of the results.

Mr Samaras said: “Supporting the electric vehicle industry is clearly an electoral positive. The vast majority of respondents expect governments to do a lot more when it comes to supporting the electric vehicle industry.”

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