Flemish Government agrees on electric vehicle bonus

Flemish Government agrees on electric vehicle bonus

The Flemish Government reached an agreement on electric vehicle grants on Friday, according to the spokesperson for Regional Mobility Minister Lydia Peeters (Open VLD).

Contrary to prior announcements, the grant can only be solicited for this year, with the digital portal for applications launching at 13:00 on Monday.

The grants remain unchanged: €5,000 for a new car priced under €40,000, and €3,000 for a second-hand one initially priced at a maximum of €60,000.

Originally, the government planned for the grant application to be available for three years, but this has been reduced to one year. "It’s the next Flemish government’s task to decide on the future of this venture," said Peeters' office.

The State Council previously warned of inequalities developing if the allocated €20 million budget couldn’t meet an increase in demand.

This led the Open VLD Minister to return to the Flemish Government with a revised proposition. The three-year period was scrapped and the grant will only be accessible for a year.

However, this doesn’t undermine the grant’s goal, insists the Minister: “The purpose of the grant is to encourage a shift towards ‘zero-emission’ mobility, particularly for individuals hindered by the cost compared to a conventional fuel vehicle.”

Citizens can apply for the grant electronically from Monday, for any vehicle ordered from 25th September onwards and registered no earlier than 1st January 2024.

This includes cars, vans, and “microcars” (category L7e-C), as long as they are classified as "zero-emission".

For used cars, they must be a minimum of 3 years old and a maximum of 8 years old. The portal provides a list of qualifying models.

The opposition was critical of the move. Flemish Green Party member, Stijn Bex (Groen), condemned it as an "electoral gimmick" using public funds and branded it ill-conceived from the start. He advocated for "investments in a just climate policy and public transportation".

This sentiment is echoed by radical left MP Jos Dhaese (PVDA), who would have preferred investment in public transportation, "rather than gifts for cars priced at €40,000."

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