Treasury e-Toll Cost Estimates Lowered

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The South African treasury has clarified its estimates of the costs of e-tolling in Gauteng’s Freeway Improvement Project. These belated estimates are far lower than those of the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa).

When Outa made its court application in April, it relied heavily on the argument that the cost of the e-toll collections would about to R20bn, the same amount as the cost of the road itself. It was due to this argument that Judge Bill Prinsloo saw fit to call for a full judicial review of e-tolling.

Last week though, Treasury director-general Lungisa Fuzile stated that their estimates come to a total of 75% of the total costs in the first few years before dropping to 20% by 2017. Fuzile said, “Collection costs are not static and will move.”

Outa representative, Wayne Duvenhage, said that at the time of their court application, the alliance had very little information available. They have since criticised the Treasury for failing to provide the real costs to the public.

Mr Fuzile also went on to say that based on information collected over the past three weeks, the economic effect on users would not be as high as previously expected by the public. They had found that for most people, the cost of the tolls would be R250 or less per month, with only 5% of users reaching the government cap of R550 per month.

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