Launch of mileage tax for trucks in Belgium

Since the 1st of April, 2016, all truck owners with a maximum allowed weight of 3.5 tonnes, have to pay a mileage tax in Belgium. Communicating broadly and internationally was a critical factor for success for the implementation of the tax. Satellic plc, the organization that installed the tax system and manages it, reached out to Connect for help.

Question

The mileage tax is based on the principle of ‘who uses it, pays for it’: Belgian truck drivers, but also their German, Slovakian and Spanish colleagues. Communicating to such a broad and international group calls for a particular expertise and a large use of resources. Satellic asked Connect to support the communications team in the period before, during and after the system’s launch.

Approach

With an intensive in-house approach, our advisors guided Satellic’s communications team. For example, we guided the elaboration of domestic and foreign information campaigns, we managed Satellic’s website and we developed the extensive text material in multiple languages. We also advised Satellic in its approach to public affairs.

Thanks to the front-office approach, it was almost as if Connect was a part of Satellic’s communications team.

Result

The devices that calculate the mileage tax are called ‘On Board Units’. On the 1st of April, 2016 – the day the system was implemented – more than 400,000 of these ‘On Board Units’ were distributed in Belgium and the rest of Europe; clear evidence that the intense communications with different stakeholders had the desired effect.

 

Images source: Satellic

Facts & Figures

  • Each day, 130,000 to 140,000 vehicles that have an ‘On Board Unit’, are using the Belgian road network.
  • Every business day, the mileage tax yields 2.4 million euros. These profits go to the three Belgian regions: the Flemish region, the Walloon region and the region of Brussels.
  • By the end of 2016, a total of 600,000 ‘On Board Units’ had already been distributed.
Launch of mileage tax for trucks in Belgium Launch of mileage tax for trucks in Belgium Launch of mileage tax for trucks in Belgium