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The new mobility budget: fewer cars and greener options


The mobility budget has been given the green light in the Chamber of Representatives. The budget gives employees with a company car the opportunity to choose more sustainable means of transport. With the mobility budget, employees can exchange their company car for a more environmentally-friendly one and spend the remaining budget on a range of transport solutions, ranging from shared cars to monthly, annual or individual tickets for public transport.

The remaining balance is paid out as wages once a year. This amount is exempt from taxes but subject to a special employee contribution of 38,07%.

Employers are free to decide whether or not to introduce a mobility budget in their company and under what conditions.

“The legislation on mobility budget will enter into force on 1 March, but it will take some time before it is published in the Bulletin of Acts and Decrees, giving employers time to implement it within their organisation,” says Veerle Michiels, the mobility expert of the HR service provider SD Worx.

Employees are not obliged to join the system. Their budget depends on the annual cost to the employer of the company car they hand in or for which they are eligible. The mobility budget will be added to the existing mobility allowance, better known as cash-for-cars. The employee also trades in his company car and receive cash. According to the latest figures, 215 employers have offered the cash-for-cars option, with 320 employees having exchanged their company cars. The net compensation varies between 239 and 711 euro net per month, with an average of 408 euro.

Below are some basic questions and answers related to the new mobility budget law.

1) Who is entitled to a mobility budget?

The mobility budget is intended for employees who already own or qualify for a company car. It concerns employees from the private sector as well as contractual and statutory civil servants. 

 2) How much is the mobility budget?

The amount corresponds to the annual gross costs paid by the employer for your current company car. They include, among other things, the financing costs of the car and additional costs, for example, fuel and insurance. 

3) What can you do with the mobility budget?

With a mobility budget, you can exchange your current company car for another means of transport, or a combination of means of transport. For example, you can opt for:

A new company car, provided it is at least as environmentally friendly as your current one. For example, your new company car may not emit more than 105 grams of CO2 per kilometre (from 2020 only 100 grams and from 2021 only 95 grams).  Your new car may also not cost more (for the employer) than your current one. 

A means of transport with a maximum speed of 45 kilometres per hour. This includes (electric) bicycles, pedelecs, (electric) motorcycles, electric scooters, hover boards and monowheels. 

You can opt for a monthly, annual or individual tickets for train, tram, metro and (water)bus.

Communal transport organised by the employer or a group of employers. 

Shared transport.  If you exchange your company car for a smaller one, you can rent a car without a driver for 30 days a year with the remaining amount of the mobility budget. This could, for example, be to hire a larger car to go on holiday with the family. You can also use the money to take a taxi or an Uber.

  • Arthur Rubinstein
  • The Brussels Times