New company car benefit-in-kind tax tables should be provided up to 2030 if the Government adopts this date as its new electrification target, says the Association of Fleet Professionals (AFP).
The industry body said it had been widely reported that an announcement would be made during November to halt sales of internal combustion engined vehicles by the end of the decade, substantially bringing forward the current target of 2040.
Paul Hollick, AFP chair, explained: “At the AFP, our opinion is that the proposed 2030 electrification target is achievable from a fleet point of view but that we would need a high level of co-operation from the Government to get there.
“Currently, we have tax tables up to 2024-25 and that allows us to effectively plan one replacement cycle ahead, which is useful, but we would also like to see tables through to 2029-30 created as soon as possible to look two cycles into the future.
“From a practical standpoint, this will mean that we can produce comprehensive EV adoption strategies that take us right through to the moment when petrol and diesel cars will no longer be available, tackling financial and operation concerns.”
Paul said that the Government should also make its intentions clear in other areas of EV policy, such as the subsidies available.
“At present, the grants that are used to discount prices of new EVs are very much part of the calculations that make them affordable to businesses. It is probably inevitable that they will be reduced over time but if they are suddenly withdrawn or substantially reduced at some point in the future, it does make the maths difficult.
“Similarly, we’d like to see more detailed plans created around the growth of the charging infrastructure. If only EVs are on sale by 2030, we’re going to need to see a massive increase in availability, and new and effective solutions created – for example, for people who don’t have a drive on which to charge their vehicle.”
The fleet industry was extremely enthusiastic about EV adoption, Paul added, but the new target would mean that there needed to be realistic plans in place.
“Our message to the Government is that the 2030 objective is realistic but only with a stable taxation environment and the right physical infrastructure. Changing policy substantially at every Budget is just going to make things difficult.”
Paul added that the AFP was keen to engage with the Government in conversations about the future of company vehicle taxation and business transport in general.
“One of the reasons for the formation of the AFP was to allow the fleet industry to speak with one voice and we are very keen to make our views heard at the highest level and to bring our expertise to bear in useful discussions.
“This might mean talking about the future of company car taxation but also, for example, we would also like to see tax breaks introduced for personal mobility budgets, which is a policy that can already be seen on the continent.”