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Govt wants more electric cars on the roads

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 5/05/2016

The government has announced a package of measures designed to increase the uptake of electric cars.

Transport Minister Simon Bridges says they're the way of the future and the government wants to encourage the switch sooner rather than later.

The target is to double the number of electric vehicles every year to reach about 64,000 by 2021.

The measures include a nationwide information campaign that's going to cost $1 million a year for the next five years.

The package includes:

* Extending the Road User Charges exemption on light electric vehicles until they make up two per cent of the light vehicle fleet

* A new Road User Charges exemption for heavy electric vehicles until they make up two per cent of the heavy vehicle fleet

* Work across Government and private sector to investigate the bulk purchase of electric vehicles

* Government agencies co-ordinating activities to support the development and roll-out of public charging infrastructure including providing information and guidance

* $1 million annually for a nation-wide electric vehicle information and promotion campaign over five years

* A contestable fund of up to $6 million per year to encourage and support innovative low emission vehicle projects

* Allowing electric vehicles in bus lanes and high-occupancy vehicle lanes on the State Highway network and local roads

* A review of tax depreciation rates and the method for calculating fringe benefit tax to ensure electric vehicles are not being unfairly disadvantaged

* Establishing an electric vehicles leadership group across business, local and central government.

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