Hence, following the recommendations of the “Pällmann”-Commission in order to sustain
transport investments in the long term, new instruments to gradually switch towards the user-
pays principle, the HGV motorway toll and two PPP models, have been introduced. The
distance based HGV toll replaced a time based Euro-vignette scheme and should have been
started in 2003. The toll is collected by means of an automatic, satellite navigation and mobile
communications based system. Due to technical problems with this new type of system, the
actual start was postponed until the beginning of 2005 leading to substantial decreases in
revenues that had been foreseen for infrastructure investments.
Since 1.1.2005 the heavy goods vehicles with a maximum permissible weight of at least 12
tons are charged the HGV toll on the federal motorways. The average toll rate is 12.4
Eurocents per kilometre, differentiated according to axles and emission classes. The basic rate
has been determined based on the motorway renewal costs that are caused by HGV.
These had been estimated in a study by Prognos and IWW (2002) to add up to 3.4 billion Euros in
2003 and an average of 15 Eurocents per kilometre driven. The rate has been temporarily
reduced to decrease the additional burden on the freight transport sector, after a compensation
scheme for German forwarders was rejected by the European Commission.
The charge is raised by means of a satellite based automated toll collection system which measures the
exact number of kilometres driven based on transmitted GPS positioning data of the HGVs.
The system is operated by a private sector company – Toll Collect – a joint daughter of
Deutsche Telekom AG and DaimlerChrysler AG. The gross toll revenue for 2005 is estimated
to reach 3 billion Euros in 2005; by the end of August 1.9 billion Euros had been collected