Wednesday, 31 March 2021 06:44

Federal Labor to offer EV subsidies while Vic Labor taxes them Featured

Federal Labor to offer EV subsidies while Vic Labor taxes them Image by Francis Ray from Pixabay

Federal Labor leader Anthony Albanese is set to announce that the party will put in place some modest incentives that would help to push the take-up of electric vehicles in Australia, in the event that it wins the next election.

Albanese, who is the Opposition leader, will tell the party's online national conference on Wednesday, that the policy would remove import and fringe-benefit taxes on all non-luxury vehicles that cost below $77,500, The Conversation reported.

The EV policy would cost about $200 million over three years. Labor also will say it plans to set up community batteries, which will cost an additional $200 million over the same period.

Such batteries would be able to supply about 500kWH of storage which is enough for roughly 250 local households.

Albanese's announcement would be in direct opposition to the policy of the Victorian Labor Party, which has put in place a tax on EVS that would come to about $300 per vehicle.

According to the Victorian Treasurer Tim Pallas, he expects to see price parity between fossil-fuel vehicles and electric vehicles by 2025.

At the last federal election in 2019, the Labor Party offered subsidies to buyers of electric vehicles as an incentive to drive take-up to 50% of the vehicle population by 2030.

Albanese and energy spokesman Chris Bowen said in a statement that while many Australians have indicated they would like to buy an EV, the price of such vehicles is a disincentive.

The cheapest EV in Australia, the MG ZS EV Essence, costs about $44,000. [corrected]. The Nissan Leaf is next in line at about $53,000.

“By reducing upfront costs, Labor’s electric car discount will encourage uptake, cutting fuel and transport costs for households and reducing emissions at the same time,” the statement said.

Australia has about 20,000 electric vehicles on its roads and last year only 0.7% of vehicles bought were EVs. The report said the global average was 4.2%.

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Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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