A new tax will burden Gauteng motorists in place of e-Tolls

Gauteng motorists can expect the introduction of a new or increased tax to pay for e-Tolls. Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi announced that he tasked finance MEC Jacob Mamabolo to come up with a “new revenue model” so that the debt incurred to build the e-Toll roads must “be taken away from the South African National Roads Agency (Sanral)”.

The only way a new revenue model to repay the loans can be devised is either through the introduction of a new tax or the increase of an existing tax, like vehicle license fees. The concept of a “new revenue model” must not be confused with the scrapping of e-Tolls without any further cost to Gauteng residents.

The current budget of the Gauteng Provincial Government (GPG) does not have sufficient room to move to cover these debts within its current revenue and expenditure framework. New sources of funding will have to be found to cover debts taken over from Sanral.

The DA has opposed e-Tolls for the past 13 years, and we will continue with our campaign to have this unwanted system scrapped. We have maintained that enough revenue was already generated through fuel levies in Gauteng that could already have paid off the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project (GFIP). Gauteng generates the bulk in fuel levies and taxes in South Africa.

It is, therefore, possible to pay off the GFIP debt through existing revenue-generating mechanisms.