The Northern Territory will become the latest Australian jurisdiction to embrace electric vehicles, with the unveiling of a five-year strategy and implementation plan to support drivers to make the switch to electric vehicles.
The strategy, released by the NT government on Wednesday, includes a range of measures for implementation over the next five years, including reduced registration and stamp duty fees for electric vehicles, financial support for new charging infrastructure, and a commitment to increasing the number of EVs in the government’s own fleet.
The strategy also includes plans to support local training and up-skilling of local workers for the installation and maintenance of up to 400 electric vehicle charging stations at government buildings, as well as training for mechanics for servicing.
The NT government says it plans to waive registration charges for EVs for five years starting from July 2022, and will also reduce stamp duty for new and second-hand electric vehicle purchases by $1,500 over the same period. It says this will serve as an effective stamp duty waiver for vehicles with a purchase cost of $50,000 or less.
The strategy also flags the potential for a shift to road user charges, similar to those being implemented now by the Victorian and in six years New South Wales governments – but the NT government has only committed to participating in national forums about cooperation on such charges at this stage.
“As is occurring elsewhere in Australia, the number of EVs in the Northern Territory is expected to increase, potentially quite rapidly, particularly as price parity with conventional vehicles is expected to occur in Australia around 2025,” the strategy paper says.
“By investing in EV charging infrastructure and supporting EV uptake now, the Northern Territory Government can ensure that the Northern Territory is prepared for the transition to EVs and is well placed to harness the potential benefits which EVs can provide.”
NT minister for renewables and energy, Eva Lawler, said that the strategy had been developed following strong positive support from the NT community for electric vehicles and will form part of broader government efforts to reduce the territory’s greenhouse gas emissions.
“She said 79 per cent of respondents supported the NT Government encouraging EV use and 77 per cent agreed that now is the right time to encourage EV use.
Seventy-one per cent of respondents indicated that they would also support the encouragement of EV tourism in the Northern Territory through the rollout of new infrastructure.