Filling stations along a highway may offer a few charging stations, provided that the charging stations remain an ‘additional facility’ to the filling station. So gas stations are not allowed to offer more charging points than filling points, according to a decision by the State Council.
The State Council decision centered on an issue between Fastned and Fast Charging Network on one side and the Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management on the other. In recent years, the Secretary has given permission to several gas stations along highways to offer charging stations as an additional facility. Fastned and The Fast Charging Network were against this, as these two companies also offer charging stations near many gas stations. For this reason, they appealed against the licenses granted by the Minister.
One of the appeals relates to the question of when there is an “additional judgment”. Gas stations have a permit in which the sale of fuel is the primary facility. Additionally, gas stations may offer additional facilities, such as a convenience store, car wash or candy machine. However, many gas stations have also applied for a charging station as an “additional facility”, for which the ministry has given permission.
However, Fastned and The Fast Charging Network have found that it is unclear when charging stations are “complementary” as a facility and when they are no longer “complementary”. over here The State Council largely agrees. In the end, however, according to the judge, you can say that the charging stations are “extra” if they belong to the gas station.
Concretely, this means that a filling station may not be granted permission to install charging stations as an additional facility if the number of charging stations exceeds the number of filling points. In the ruling, the judge mentioned the example of the Den Ruygen Hoek-Oost rest area. Shell has permission to install six charging stations here. The gas station itself contains nineteen gas stations. According to the judge, this means that “the charging function of the power charging point is clearly subordinate to the main function of the gas station as the point of sale of engine fuel.”
However, Shell also received permission to install four charging stations in the Peulwijk-Oost service area, while there are only six tank columns. Here are the “clamps” according to the judge. “Especially now that Fastned has also placed an order for two service area charging stations as an additional facility.” This means that six charging stations will appear as an ‘additional facility’, while there are only six refueling points. So Shell does not get permission from the State Board to install charging stations here.
Fastned and The Fast Charging Network had other reasons to appeal, many of which have already been put forward in a similar situation. For example, the two companies claim that it is dangerous and unclear whether drivers should choose between providers of charging points in their comfort zone. Motorists, for example, may drive on the wrong side in order to keep getting to the other provider.
The two charging station companies also believe they are treated unequally, for example because gas stations get a permit for charging stations for an indefinite period. That’s while charging station companies get a fifteen-year permit. The State Council does not agree on these points. So gas stations are still allowed to file charging stations from the court, as long as it remains an additional activity.
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