File picture: Bheki Radebe / Independent Newspapers.

Johannesburg - The Western Cape government on Thursday called for further public comment on its proposed three percent increase in motor vehicle licence fees, which it said was aimed at raising more money to construct, upgrade and maintain roads.

"These fees, along with budgetary allocations, help keep the province’s roads in a good condition and during the 2017/18 financial year 94.8 percent of vehicle kilometres travelled on surfaced roads were travelled on roads in fair or very good condition," it said.

"A total of 7019km of provincial roads are in a fair to very good condition."

It said the money would help reduce the road maintenance backlog, which has been decreased by over 16 percent over the last seven years.

During the 2017/18 financial year, 63 080 square metres of surfaced roads were upgraded in the province, while 915,772 square metres were rehabilitated, 45 997 kilometres of gravel roads were bladed and 22 kilometres upgraded to surfaced roads.

This was in addition to the construction or upgrading of six bridges and 76 culverts, the Western Cape government added.

"Our roads are an asset with an approximate value of R68 billion and they are consumed, over time, by the close to two million vehicle owners in the Western Cape and other users," it said.

The invitation for comment on the proposals, first published on January 9, is open until February 8.

African News Agency (ANA)