The federal cabinet has approved an electric vehicle (EV) policy for Pakistan that aims to increase the number of electric cars on the road, slash the oil import bill and curb air pollution.
After months of deliberations and dealing with multiple challenges, the policy has now been green-lit by the federal cabinet.
Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan and Malik Amin Aslam, Federal Minister for Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam elaborated the national EV policy and how the government plans to implement it.
Aslam said that they are aiming to convert 30% of the total cars in Pakistan into EVs and added that the local car makers had already finished 90% of the work. He said,
I recently visited Karachi and was surprised to see that local car manufacturers are waiting for the cabinet’s approval for EV policy so that they can roll out their electric vehicles into the market.
He added that this policy would also help slash greenhouse emissions saying,
In developed countries, the ratio of emissions of greenhouse gases from vehicles in the total volume of environmental pollution is 20% but here in Pakistan, it is 40%. With the introduction of electric cars, trucks, vans and even tri-wheeler rickshaws, the rate of pollution and smog will drop.
Aslam added that the policy aims to provide cheaper transport, as the cost of running electric vehicles is considerably lower than that of gasoline, Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) or other types of fuel.
He informed the media that over 3,000 CNG stations that had been shut down due to the natural gas shortage will be transformed into EV charging stations adding that,
Our negotiations are underway with some oil companies in this regard. A firm is ready to establish battery change stations to provide batteries to the commuters on lease.
He hopes that the policy will also help the government slash the oil import bill which has reached $2 billion annually.
“Another benefit of the policy is that it will boost the local car industry and will create hundreds of thousands of new jobs in the country,” the minister for climate change said.
Some of the salient features of this policy are:
Market development and public awareness through incentives and
subsidies on electric vehicles especially to companies willing to step
up EV related industry in Pakistan (years 1 and 2)
Fuel import bill substitution through targeted penetration of electric vehicles along with local assembly and manufacturing (years 3 and 4)
Reasonable local adoption and export of electric vehicles and its components through indigenous research, development, assembling and manufacturing (year 5 and beyond