Pakistan to start assembling electric vehicles this year

Web DeskWeb Editor

30th Jul, 2021. 01:48 pm

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan will start local assembly of electric vehicles by the end of this year under the prime minister’s clean and green initiative, a senior official said.

Addressing a consultative workshop “Scaling up electric mobility in Pakistan”, organised jointly by the National Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (NEECA) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), Minister for Energy Hammad Azhar said that the government has introduced its first national electric vehicles policy last year and announced new incentives to promote adoption of electric vehicles.

The government has reduced the Customs duty and sales tax on such vehicles, which would help accelerate the transition towards cleaner and efficient mobility, he added.

The minister said the role of electric vehicles charging infrastructure was critical; hence, the widespread, accessible public charging infrastructure network was needed to support a robust electric vehicles market

There are some unique challenges that the government has to address towards achieving the electric mobility goals. First, the government has to provide a reliable supply of power to charge these electric vehicles and this would require upgradation of the grid and distribution network, he said.

He said local assembly of electric motorbikes had already been started in the country, adding that the private sector has also started developing charging infrastructure in the country. The government would fully support the private sector, in this regard, he said, adding that there was a need to establish a regulatory framework to streamline the development of electric vehicles charging stations across the country.

Azhar urged the NEECA and other relevant entities to expedite work on the regulations, standardisation and licensing policy for the development of charging infrastructure, adding that it would not only reduce billions of dollars oil import bill but also help control pollution in cities and absorb the surplus electricity capacity in the country.

The minister congratulated NEECA and the UNDP for their partnership on this aspect of electrification of the road transport sector in Pakistan.

Earlier, speaking on the occasion, NEECA managing director Dr Sardar Mohazzam said that NEECA was authorised to define the standard of charging stations for electric vehicles.

Charging stations were being set up in various parts of the country for such vehicles, he said; however, the price and standard of voltage for charging electric vehicles would be decided.

UNDP deputy resident representative Aliona Niculita said that transport and energy were priority sectors for UNDP and they would provide full cooperation to the government in this regard.

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