A future tax on foreign lorries which ‘only cross over France’?

The French government is thinking about taxing foreign heavy goods vehicles but François de Rugy, the new minister of ecological transition, denies the return of a “green tax”.

The government is working on a sticker aimed particularly at taxing “foreign lorries”, some of which are “only crossing over France”, François de Rugy, minister of ecological transition, said on BFMTV on 23 September.

Asked about a possible return of the “green tax” on heavy goods vehicles, which was dropped by the previous government in 2014 following several months of demonstrations, de Rugy described this system as a “bad example of environmental taxation mismanagement, so we’re not doing it again.”

“However, we are working, as are other European countries, on creating a form of a sticker, particularly to tax foreign lorries that are only crossing over France. There are some who don’t even refuel, so they don’t even pay the fuel tax and they don’t pay for wear and tear on the roads,” he said.

“We will work on this in 2019, we want to find the right solution in 2019,” stated de Rugy, adding that this tax “can be conducted at the French level but within the framework of the EU directive on this matter, which we respect, of course.”

“It’s not just to say ‘we will tax lorries a little more, so it will be environmentally virtuous’. Resources are needed to fund investment in the road and rail networks so that we don’t suffer events such as the accident in Genoa”, the minister added.