ROME – Italy is considering incentives of up to 4,000 euros ($ 4,550) for buyers of the latest generation of gasoline and diesel cars, joining France and Germany in offering support to the automotive industry, which has been hit by the coronavirus crisis.
The ruling center-left PD party, supported by Italian centrist Viva, has proposed including incentives in the economic stimulus package currently being discussed in parliament, which is expected to be approved by mid-July.
Subsidies will be offered to buyers of ‘Euro 6’ vehicles. This will reach 4,000 euros if the buyer scrap cars 10 years or older. The amount will consist of € 2.00 from the government and € 2,000 from dealers and car makers.
Registration in Italy down 50 percent in May, when Rome began to progressively lift lockdown measures, after sales were almost wiped out in April and March.
The incentives will be financed in part by the government through a 250 million euro package and partly by car dealers, according to the amendment to the economic stimulus decision.
The proposal is likely to lead to new strife within the ruling coalition in Italy, with the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement opposing any incentives for combustion engine cars.
However, Industry Minister Stefano Patuanelli, a leading 5-Star member, said on Friday that in “this extraordinary time” Italy needs to “think of ways to support sales, without affecting environmental targets.”
Measures to support the Italian automotive market can also be extended soon after the end of this year, when Rome may be allowed to load a portion of the money it will receive from European recovery funds.
Both France and Germany also aim to use incentives to accelerate the shift to cleaner driving, offering subsidies to buyers of electric vehicles.
Germany said on Thursday it would do it dual incentives offered to buyers of ultra-low emission cars as part of an economic recovery package but the government excludes incentives to purchase pure gasoline and diesel cars, which according to opponents would undermine the country’s climate protection goals.
A 8 billion euro plan in France to help the automotive industry including incentives for electric vehicles that can reach 12,000 euro by canceling incentives for eligible buyers.
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