When the sharing economy meets electric vehicles charging infrastructure

by Fanny Vanrykel, PhD, ULiège; Damien Ernst, Full Professor, ULiège; Marc Bourgeois, Full Professor, ULiège;

Share&Charge

Recent technological advances have enabled the development of new business models based on platforms which enable the connection of previously unmatched demand-side and supply-side market participants. Within this context, platforms acting as intermediaries notably allow individuals to provide access to goods and services to other individuals, a phenomenon which is known as the sharing economy. To some extent, they render individuals more active, regardless the actual motives that drive citizens.

Such models have reached a wide range of sectors like housing, transport, food delivery, etc. In the sector of transportation, and more particularly in the area of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure, new models, both relying on platforms and on a common idea of sharing, tend to propose an innovative solution to the lack of EV charging stations. This is the case, for instance, of the German pilot project named Share&Charge.

Share&Charge is a platform that organises the sharing of charging stations for electric vehicles (EVs) and the billing for the energy transactions. It follows a peer-to-peer fashion, enabling direct transactions between charging station owners and EV drivers. Such a model could positively impact energy policy by tackling several upcoming obstacles associated with the development of EVs and of distributed energy production capacities.

The regulatory challenge

In our research, we have identified a number of regulatory challenges, pertaining, in particular, to tax aspects. More specifically, we have studied how the following taxes apply to models like Share&Charge: energy taxes, fees and tariffs, value added tax, and personal income tax.

Challenges regard the qualification of actors and operations involved within Share&Charge. Further issues concern the sharing economy. Existing (tax) rules do not necessarily take into account the specific patterns of the sharing economy, which generally involve individuals acting not professionally. Hence, they may impose excessive burden on them. Finally, there is a need for further studies regarding the need of financial support for such models like Share&Charge, especially to encourage the use of renewable electricity, and regarding cross-boarder situations.

You want to know more? http://blogs.ulg.ac.be/damien-ernst/fostering-sharecharge-through-proper-regulation/

#TUCTE18

Share&Charge project was selected among many to exhibit a poster during Mobility4EU’s public event TUCTE18, held on the 13th of November 2018 in Brussels.

If you want to know more about the project, watch the video and find a summary of the event and the other project presented at the exhibition of posters here.