8 Jan 2010

Mandatory third-party car insurance unlikely

2:59 pm on 8 January 2010

Transport Minister Steven Joyce says third party car insurance is unlikely to be made mandatory.

The idea has been under consideration as part of the Government's Safer Journeys road safety strategy aimed at reducing the road toll.

But a review by the Ministry of Transport shows that the number of drivers with insurance is already roughly in line with countries where it's compulsory.

More than 90% of 4000 people surveyed said they had motor vehicle insurance. The rest either said they had an uninsured vehicle or didn't know if they were insured.

Mr Joyce says the findings suggest that with such high levels of insurance, compulsory coverage might not deliver significant safety benefits.

He says there may be better ways, such as putting a power restriction on vehicles.