Road charging: EC sends reasoned opinions
IP/06/884 Road charging: European Commission sends reasoned opinion to Spain and France for discriminative road pricing
Brussels, Belgium – Road charging: European Commission sends reasoned opinion to Spain and France for discriminative road pricing.
The European Commission has sent a reasoned opinion to Spain and France for failure to respect European legislation on road charging. Both Member States apply excessively high discounts of up to 50% and 30 % respectively for frequent users of their motorways.
The aim of the Eurovignette Directive is to ensure that road infrastructure charges match the costs associated to the use of this infrastructure.
Member States may vary the rates of tolls according to the emission classes of the vehicles using the motorway and according to the time of day, but particular discounts for frequent users shall not go beyond actual administrative cost savings. This provision ensures that all haulers contribute on an equal basis to the cost of the infrastructure they use, and avoids charges below the infrastructure costs for frequent users to be compensated for with higher payments by occasional users. However, Spain and France did not provide any evidence that administrative cost savings would justify discounts at the levels which are presently applied.
The recently adopted amending Directive specifies that discounts for frequent users may under no circumstances exceed 13 % of the toll..
 Directive 1999/62/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 June 1999 on the charging of heavy goods vehicles for the use of certain infrastructures; Official Journal L 187 , 20/07/1999 , page 42 – 50;
 Directive 2006/38/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 May 2006 amending Directive 1999/62/EC on the charging of heavy goods vehicles for the use of certain infrastructures; Official Journal L 157 , 09/06/2006, page 8 – 23