The Netherlands recently signed a Green Deal, involving a broad coalition of 30 private and public organisations, that should allow for a network of shared cars on Dutch roads to reach 100,000 within three years, with the tangible consequence of reducing the number of vehicles on the road and thus the many disadvantages of using cars for everything: traffic congestion, pollution, accident risks.
The Dutch Green Deal is all the more interesting as it testifies to a multisectoral dynamic that is particularly relevant to this type of societal innovation process.
A variety of players, such as carsharing and leasing companies, municipalities, private companies, interest groups and the Dutch government, have therefore joined forces to cooperate in the field of carsharing.
With this initiative, the parties involved hope to raise awareness of the concept of carsharing and of its many advantages, to start up pilot projects in local communities, to encourage an increase in carsharing options, and to eliminate uncertainties surrounding the concept, with regard to taxation, for instance.
Owning a car is very expensive. When you add up insurance, maintenance, taxes, parking fees, etc. the investment becomes quite large. What's more, it is no secret that Belgian roads, and especially in our capital, are literally overflowing with cars. Carsharing not only means reducing our bills – whether it is for the vehicle owner or for the renter – but also reducing our ecological footprint and contributing to the reduction of the societal impact of a saturated car density.
Many Belgian initiatives want to act to this end and offer intelligent mobility concepts: Cambio, ZenCar, Djump, Blabla Car, etc. CarAmigo complements this range and offers the option of sharing, or "carsharing" your car when you are not using it.
This online platform connects car owners with people who need a car temporarily, while benefiting from around the clock breakdown assistance in partnership with Touring and an omnium insurance, both included in the rental price, and both covering each vehicle for the entire duration of each carshare.
On a local scale, promising and encouraging collaborations between public operators and CarAmigo have already seen the light of day: indeed, in February, the startup signed an agreement with the municipality of Schaerbeek, who registered some of their vehicles on the platform to make them available at weekends. It is a first in Belgium, and an experience that CarAmigo will continue to develop with other municipalities, whether in Brussels, Wallonia, or Flanders.
CarAmigo therefore urges the Belgian Government and the mandated regional authorities to take advantage of this positive mobility trend and to initiate dialogue with the sector to encourage measures to be taken to help stimulate carsharing.
A Belgian Green Deal, are we on track?