E-tolling failed in Portugal and will fail in South Africa

The DA has called on the South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL) and the Department of Transport to provide clarity as to how e-tolling was pursued in South Africa despite evidence existing that the project has not been successful in other countries, such as Portugal.

e toll

It can only be deduced from South Africa’s failure to learn from Portugal’s e-tolling woes, that neither SANRAL nor the Department of Transport conducted thorough research into the viability of e-tolling. If they did, they negligently opted to ignore the Portuguese example.

According to recent reports, as a result of lower than expected revenue from e-tolls, Portugal’s e-tolling system has been so unsustainable that the country’s road chief has warned that there will not be enough money for road maintenance.

It was found that on average 19 % of toll-road users fail to pay for using the toll roads and that e-tolls have effectively forced thousands of cars onto secondary roads.

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Contrary to SANRAL’s repeated assertions, e-tolling does not create funding for road maintenance, all it will do is to create a massive administrative burden, undermine economic growth, hurt the poor, and ultimately result in job losses.

It is simple: e-tolling does not work. It has failed in other countries and will fail in South Africa too.

The Department of Transport and SANRAL now need to do the right thing and abandon e-tolling.

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