EU court declares Germany’s motorway tolls illegal

The European Court of Justice has ruled that motorway tolls in Germany are illegal because they unfairly penalise drivers from other European Union countries.

The Luxembourg court’s ruling means Germany will have to drop or revise its motorway toll system.

The case was brought by Austria, which complained that the levies of up to 130 euros (£116) a year are discriminatory and therefore illegal under EU law.

All motorists have to pay the toll according to their vehicle’s size and engine type, but German taxpayers can file for refunds.

The European Commission initially rejected the toll system on similar grounds to those Austria cited in its court challenge, but later approved an amended version that was intended to address its concerns.