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AFP calls for extended company car tax outlook if ICE sales ban brought forward

Date: 21 October 2020   |   Author: Sean Keywood

New company car BIK tax tables should be provided up to 2030 if the UK Government adopts this date for the abolition of new petrol and diesel vehicle sales, according to the Association of Fleet Professionals (AFP).

The industry body said it was reacting to reports that the government was planning to bring forward the ban from its previously announced date of 2040.

AFP chair Paul Hollick said that while a 2030 target would be achievable from a fleet point of view, a lot of government help would be needed to get there.

He said: "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."

Hollick said that the government should also make its intentions clear in other areas of EV policy, such as the subsidies available.

He said: "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 It is probably inevitable that they will be reduced over time but if they are suddenly withdrawn or substantially reduced at some point in the future, it does make the maths difficult.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."

Hollick added that the fleet industry is 'extremely enthusiastic' about EV adoption, and that the AFP is keen to engage with the government about the future of company vehicle taxation and business transport in general.

He said: "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.

"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."