The much debated Electric Vehicle Policy will be integrated as a part of Auto Development Policy (ADP 2016-2021), which would comprise of investment plans, standardization of equipment, the promotion of localization, generating exports in the long run to have a positive impact on the national economy. But the EV policy seems to have more problems than solutions and agreements. The uncertainty of the policy is also making the investors of ADP 2016-2021 take a backseat. Meanwhile, the auto sector faces recession each day as the policy gets delayed.
The Ministry of Climate Change is putting in its best efforts to promote electric vehicles in Pakistan to help protect natural environment, but it is yet to come up with concrete policies to translate this dream into reality. According to the data, the federal cabinet approved first-ever national Electric Vehicles (EV) policy with an aim to tackle negative impacts of climate change and offer affordable transport to the common people. The government has set the target to transform 3,000 CNG stations to EV charging stations and convert 100,000 cars and 500,000 bikes and rickshaws to EVs in next 4 years.
The charging stations for EVs will require electricity that will be through distribution companies only. The issue is that high concentration of EV home charging during peak hours/periods would overload local power transformers. There are also some more questions including whether battery powered EVs would be competitive with conventional fueled vehicles in next five to ten years and how and when cost-effective charging infrastructure would be developed in the country. Since carbon emissions from motor vehicles is considered one of the largest contributors to air pollution therefore the government is working hard to introduce culture of electric vehicles everywhere in the country. In this connection, this scribe found following two developments worth mentioning:
Sazgar launches Pakistan’s first battery operated ev three-wheeler
Sazgar Engineering Works Limited is a well-known name in automobile industry of Pakistan. Recently, they have launched EV-three-wheeler which will help to reduce air pollution and Pakistan’s oil import bill. These vehicles will be produced locally, including their parts by local vending industry except for the electric kits. This will help in upgrading auto parts industry, which in return will contribute to national exchequer in form of taxes and will also generate employment opportunities. The cost of this 3-wheeler is approx. 4 to 4.5 lacs and in next 2 months will be available in market for end-user. Furthermore, there are lots of opportunities in exporting these EV three-wheeler vehicles to various countries by which we can increase foreign exchange for the country. Sazgar is already exporting its auto rickshaw to different countries including Japan.
MVM and Zhengzhou Yutong partner together to manufacture electric buses
A multinational electric company known as MVM Group has signed a memorandum with Zhengzhou Yutong Bus Co Ltd for the manufacturing of electric buses for the Pakistani auto sector. This initiative occurred under the umbrella of CPEC arrangement and is known to bring economic stability in the country. MVM Group is an electric power generating company that is situated in Hungary. It is the largest electrical manufacturing company in the country and is responsible for large scale distribution, sale, and production of electricity. Zhengzhou Yutong is situated in China and is formally known for manufacturing large scale commercial level vehicles.
The aim of launching electric transportation is to revolutionize the Pakistan Public Transportation into sustainable with the zero-emissions system. The first step is to accumulate electric buses into the metro system and then disperse them to intercity transportation. With the launch of electric vehicles, the country will also face financial stability and the fares of transportation will decrease for the general public.
[box type=”note” align=”” class=”” width=””]The writer is a Karachi based freelance columnist and is a banker by profession. He could be reached on Twitter @ReluctantAhsan[/box]