"Given the right conditions the fleet of electric vehicles in the country may have increased to 50-60 thousand by 2025," the Head of the Department for Sectors of the Economy of the Analytical Center Grigori Mikrukov told the Rossiyskaya Gazeta correspondent.
Electric Transport Will be Developed Locally
The right conditions have to do with the draft automotive industry development strategy until 2025, which envisions free parking within city limits, access to special lanes, reduced transport tax, free charging at public charging stations, discounts on mandatory driver liability insurance, discounts on toll road fees or even free access to toll roads etc. Some of these incentives are non-monetary, meaning that no direct costs will be incurred by the state or business.
According to the expert, electric transport will be developing locally, initially in major cities: Moscow and Saint Petersburg. Kazan, Sochi and Krasnodar may also join in. The other regions don't yet have potential demand or the financial resources to offer the requisite incentives. "Each of the major cities may need between 300 and 500 million rubles to develop the charging infrastructure needed to ensure the availability of the minimal number of charging stations on all the key highways of the city. In addition, charging stations need to be built on the highways connecting these cities. In total, at the initial stage about 1 billion rubles will be needed to create the required starting conditions for the owners of electric vehicles in Moscow and Saint Petersburg. Given that the cost of the new electric vehicle is higher than the average, and that a lot of car owners will naturally be reluctant to make this change, the number of potential buyers is still going to remain low. The experience of other countries shows that in order to actively encourage demand a mechanism is needed that counter-balances the difference in price between an electric vehicle and an internal combustion vehicle. However, this only makes sense if electric vehicles are manufactured domestically, not when 100 percent of them get imported. And while at this stage it is very difficult to estimate the cost of a complex project that would include localization of manufacturing and subsidies for buyers, it's bound to run into dozens of billions of rubles," Mr. Mikrukov told the newspaper.
According to the expert, electric vehicles are expensive by default and not just in Russia. And for this reason, other countries use numerous mechanisms for stimulating demand. These include subsidies, grants, tax benefits, free parking, discounts on toll roads, reduced loan and leasing rates. Insurance companies offer better terms under the "green package". All countries are also working towards the development of the charging infrastructure.
Source: The Rossiyskaya Gazeta
Photo: from open sources