You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Road user charges could replace fuel tax

AAP logoAAP 23/11/2016

Drivers could be paying for how much and when they use roads instead of through the fuel tax, but not anytime soon.

Responding to Infrastructure Australia's 15 Year Plan, the Turnbull government will establish a study into the potential benefits and impacts of road user charging for light vehicles instead of the fuel excise.

"If there were to be any changes in this direction, that's a 10 to 15 year journey," Major Projects Minister Paul Fletcher told ABC radio on Thursday.

Mr Fletcher said many people did not realise they pay a lot to use roads through registration fees and fuel excise.

Modelling suggests that could as much as $50 a week, but drivers of fuel efficient vehicles pay less.

"One of the aims of this study will be to have a very thorough look at our current system and how it works," he said.

The minister said having a more direct user-charging system would mean a more direct connection between what people pay and how the money is spent.

"It would also more directly reflect where people are travelling so that decisions about which roads got upgraded when the investments were made would be more directly responsive to travel patterns."

Labor transport spokesman Anthony Albanese said the government's response was no more than a committee raking over another committee's work.

"When the government has a serious proposal before the parliament we will be happy to engage with them in a constructive fashion," he said.

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon