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UK: Half of green car subsidies to remain unclaimed

A Government drive to boost sales of electric cars is failing as ministers admitted only half of the available subsidies for “plug-in” vehicles are likely to be claimed by motorists.

Grants of up to £5,000 are available to people buying “ultra low-emission” vehicles under a scheme introduced by Philip Hammond, the former Transport Secretary, in 2011.

But despite £400 million being set aside when the scheme opened three years ago, the Government now accepts it is only likely to hand out £230 million by the time the offer expires in 2015, leaving £170 million in unclaimed subsidies.

Recent figures published by the Department for Transport showed that just 6,709 claims had been made by the end of December at a maximum cost of £33.5 million.


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