Drivers who were expecting to see toll fees reduced by 50% on July 1 as announced by the government on Portugal’s ‘ex-SCUT’ highways, including the Algarve’s A22 motorway (also known as Via do Infante), have been disappointed to find the situation has not turned out as promised.
A 50% discount was indeed implemented – but on the original prices of the tolls when they were introduced in 2011, and not on the prices that were charged before the discount came into effect.
In other words, the discount has translated into around a 30% cut on toll fees as opposed to the 50% that was announced.
While anti-toll groups had initially viewed the discount as “better than nothing”, the “misleading manner” in which the government announced the toll reduction has left many fuming.
“This government is beyond repair. It fails to even follow laws and resolutions from Parliament. It is shameful and unacceptable,” said Algarve MP for Bloco de Esquerda (BE) and long-time leader of anti-toll group CUVI, João Vasconcelos, on his Facebook page.
“Once again, the Algarve was fooled (as were all the other regions where the discounts were applied). The discount must be 50% and not 30%. BE and other opposition parties – PS MPs voted against it – approved a 50% toll reduction on the Via do Infante and this must be fulfilled,” he said.
Plataforma P’la Reposição das SCUT A23 e A25, another anti-toll group, has also criticised the government for being “incapable of doing something right all the way through.”