21 May 21

Tax from motor vehicles up 3% in Europe

Tax revenue from motor vehicles has risen to €398 billion across key European markets, according to data published by the European Automobile Manufacturer’s Association (ACEA). Nowhere in Europe are taxes per vehicle as high as in Belgium, where the average annual tax revenue per motor vehicle amounts to €3,187.

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Not only is this figure 3% higher than the previous, it represents close to two and a half times the total budget of the European Union. The national income ranges from €99.9 billion for Germany, which has the EU’s biggest vehicle fleet, to €6.2 billion for Ireland.

When looking at average total tax revenues per motor vehicle, Belgium collects €3,187 per vehicle annually, with Austria (€2,678) and Finland (€2,523) completing the top three of EU countries with the highest per vehicle income. The lowest tax revenues are found in Greece and Spain, where the state collects €1,264 and €1,068 per vehicle respectively.

This data was published in ACEA’s Tax Guide, which provides an overview of all taxes that are levied on vehicles in the EU and other world markets, including taxes on vehicle acquisition (VAT, sales tax, registration tax), ownership (annual circulation tax, road tax) and motoring (fuel tax).

Fund charging infrastructure

“Vehicle, road and fuel taxes generate huge amounts of government revenue every year in the EU,” stated ACEA Director General, Eric-Mark Huitema. “This income should help fund the charging and refuelling infrastructure that is now urgently needed to cater for the rapidly growing market uptake of alternatively-powered vehicles.”

Huitema: “Indeed, over the first quarter of this year, almost 14% of all new cars sold in the EU were electrically chargeable. However, this trend can only be maintained if governments step up investments in infrastructure.”

When it comes to fuel taxes, petrol is still taxed more heavily than diesel in almost all European countries, with the exception of Belgium and Slovenia. Tax on diesel ranges from €317/1,000 litres (in Hungary) to €617/1,000 litres (in Italy). For petrol, taxation goes from €345/1,000 litres (Hungary) to €813/1,000 litres (the Netherlands).

VAT rates on new vehicles range from 17% in Luxembourg to 27% in Hungary, the report shows.

Average annual tax revenue per motor vehicle, by country (based on the number of vehicles on the road)
1. Belgium €3,187
2. Austria €2,678
3. Finland €2,523
4. Ireland €2,438
5. Denmark €2,251
6. Netherlands €2,158
7. Germany €1,963
8. France €1,911
9. Italy €1,727
10. Sweden €1,561
11. Portugal €1,528
12. Greece €1,264
13. Spain €1,068

Photo copyright: Shutterstock

Authored by: Benjamin Uyttebroeck