Cycling and the economy
CTC View (formal statement of CTC's policy):
- The economic benefits of investing in small scale projects that typically benefit cycling are often underestimated. On the other hand, car-dependence is a significant cost for society and large scale transport projects (e.g. roads) are not the value-for-money they are often thought to be.
- Cycling makes a positive contribution to the national economy and it is a cost-effective investment. It can help:
- Reduce congestion;
- Improve public health and save NHS money;
- Create jobs;
- Save employers money and improve productivity;
- Inject money directly into the economy via the cycle trade;
- Boost the vitality of town centres;
- Deliver goods efficiently;
- Lift house prices.
- The Treasury should incentivise cycling through:
- Adhering to the principle that 'the polluter pays' as the basis of taxation of transport users;
- Maintaining a tax-free mileage rate that makes cycling on business financially worthwhile;
- Supporting cycle commuting schemes that save businesses and employees tax (e.g. the ‘salary sacrifice’ Cycle to Work scheme);
- Reducing VAT on cycle repairs;
- Working with the European Union on changes to the VAT Directive that would encourage cycling (e.g. zero-rating cycles);
- Maintaining its policy of not taxing cycles for the use of the roads.
- Both national and local authorities should dedicate sufficient resources to smarter choices, recognising that they rely on revenue rather than capital funding.
- Economics-focused bodies such as Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), regeneration agencies, developers and retailers should recognise the value of cycling and take action to promote and encourage it.
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Publication Date:March 2014