Vietnam scraps road use fee for motorbikes

By Manh Quan, Thanh Nien News

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 Vehicles on a street in Hanoi. Photo: Ngoc Thang
The Vietnamese government has pulled the plug on a road use fee for motorbikes that officials said is too hard to collect and not worth the bother.
The decision was made at a cabinet meeting Wednesday, where everyone agreed it should be scrapped with effect from January 1 next year.
However, until the suspension takes effect, local governments will continue to collect the fee of VND50,000-150,000 (US$5.2-6.5) a year, depending on motorbikes' engine capacity.
As of June 30 this year nearly VND1.28 trillion ($56.12 million) was collected from motorbike owners around the country, much lower than the estimated VND2.6 trillion ($114 million) a year, according to the transport ministry's report.
Though the fee was introduced as long ago as in January 2013, only a few cities and provinces have collected it. Many of them have been complaining it is not easy to collect the fee.
They said many people refuse to pay, and officials cannot do anything due to a lack of punitive measures.
Moreover, the revenue from the fee does not justify the cost of collecting it and is too insignificant compared to road maintenance costs, they said.

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