Pakistan second developing country in region to approve EV policy

PM aide says draft approved by cabinet will be revised to address concerns of stakeholders

APP January 21, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has become the second developing country in the world, after India, to introduce an electric vehicle (EV) policy in the region, said Adviser to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam.

Addressing a press conference after the second inter-ministerial committee on EV policy, the adviser had refuted the news of EV policy being rejected by the Engineering Development Board (EDB) of the Ministry of Industries and Production.

He said there was no new policy to be drafted again by the ministry, rather the earlier draft approved by the federal cabinet would be revised with further amendments redressing the concerns of the representatives of Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers Association (PAMA) and Pakistan Association of Auto Parts and Accessories Manufacturers (PAAPAM).

"We want to implement the policy approved by the federal cabinet owing to its huge benefits and increasing competition," said the adviser.

Aslam said there were four main benefits of the EV policy as EVs would run on 70% less costs compared to its fuel-based counterpart.

"There are many opportunities for Pakistan under the EV industry as it would help reduce the import of oil and help save around $1 billion whereas 70% air pollution would be curtailed through EVs. The transport sector is consuming most of the fossil fuels being imported and generating a major chunk of air pollution," he added.

The adviser said the federal cabinet had approved the draft EV policy, however, meetings had been held for mulling over incentive packages to be approved by the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC).

"The policy has the vision to promote 'Made in Pakistan' EVs where indigenous production can be promoted to make the country an exporting hub of EVs in the region," he added. "Today's meeting has decided to give incentives to two and three wheeler (automobiles) comprising of rickshaws, motorcycles and buses whereas the automobile manufacturers are raising concerns over four-wheeler cars. We have given them 15 days to submit their output to be incorporated in to the policy," he said.

Aslam said India during the last week had introduced another EV policy to further enhance its incentives for EVs to attract investors in the market.

"India is offering Rs15,000 cash for buying an electric bike, Rs30,000 for rickshaw and Rs150,000 for purchasing an electric car. EVs have many advantages and this policy would help create jobs, investment and business opportunities. There is a short window of two to three years for embracing electric vehicles and if the opportunity is missed then Pakistan will become an importer of electric vehicles which would be of no use," the adviser added.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 21st, 2020.

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