“We support e-tolls in principle but the way this is being introduced cannot really work as the administrative cost is too high,” Pietman Ross, senior policy consultant at the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI) told CNBC Africa.
SACCI says it agrees with the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project in ‘principle’, a comment likely to inflame attacks from Gauteng motorists and unions.
(WATCH VIDEO: We won’t give up e-tolls campaign: Cosatu)
“Tolling is an equitable method for a motorist to pay only for the section of road used referred to as the “user‐pay” principle,” noted Ross.
The South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL) has come under attack from road users due to the e-toll fees.
The organisation argues that the toll fees enables SANRAL to provide roads sooner than the traditional tax‐based revenues which would traditionally fund these roads, deliver the much needed infrastructure and ensure dedicated funding for maintenance of the road.
SACCI notes that it supports the tolling system as user preferences can be introduced through a variety of ways.
According to SACCI an estimated 40 per cent of the revenue collections will be used in the administration of the e-toll system which makes the current system unreasonable.
(WATCH VIDEO: Makhura to review e-tolls in Gauteng)
In the past SACCI has maintained that it remained opposed to e-tolls because of the high collection costs and the overall burden the tolls will have on the economy.
South Africa’s richest province has been battling to keep up to date infrastructure with its ever increasing demographics.
SANRAL notes that provision of road infrastructure has not kept up with the increased traffic demand, resulting in a road and freeway network that is over capacity.