UK plans investment boost for EV charging points

LONDONThe UK will boost investment in electric-car (EV) infrastructure, including a £400 million (RM2.16 billion) fund for companies that produce and instal charging points, as it seeks to encourage consumers to move away from carbon-polluting vehicles.

New street lighting columns also will be required to have charging points in areas with on-street parking and a £40 million programme will be introduced to test low-cost wireless charging technology, in other measures unveiled yesterday by Transport Secretary Chris Grayling. The proposals are part of the government’s push to end the sale of new cars and vans fuelled by petrol and diesel by 2040.

“The prize is not just a cleaner and healthier environment, but a UK economy fit for the future and the chance to win a substantial slice of a market estimated to be worth up to £7.6 trillion by 2050,” Grayling will say in a speech to mark the government’s “Road to Zero” strategy. 

A lack of charging points is seen as one of the main impediments to the mass adoption of EVs, which are unable to travel as far as conventionally fuelled vehicles. While petrol prices have surged this year, the UK Treasury is growing increasingly concerned about the public health cost of air pollution and is considering the first boost in vehicle fuel duties in eight years.

The government will also take powers through the “Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill” to ensure that charging points are available at freeway service stations and large gas retailers, according to a statement. — Bloomberg