Opinion | Why South Africa needs to develop its electric vehicle market

Creator: UWE FISCHER

The electric car revolution is happening it’s now only a matter of time, with it being the main showcase at many motoring expos around the world as well many countries actively moving towards restricting the sale of combustion engine vehicles.

Once Electric Vehicles (EVs) become mainstream there will be no turning back, South Africa and other emerging economies need to stay ahead of the curve or be left behind. Many car manufactures are developing or producing EVs and once they start making more profits from EVs they will put more enhances on these types of vehicles.

Car maker Volvo has already stated it want all the cars they produce in 2019 to be electric vehicles or hybrids, as reported by GearJunkie. Volvo is known as one of the market leaders in the car manufacturing industry especially when it comes to vehicle safety. With Volvo main focus now being electric cars other competitor and car manufacture will follow suit.

Volvo is also owned by cChinese car manufactures Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, the Chinese are focus on moving to toward EVs by removing regulations for local companies as well as lowing the barriers to entry for foreign electric vehicles to enter the Chinese market. China is also the world largest car market according to statista.com which has  many automobile manufactures trying to please this market.

South Africa indeed does have an infrastructure problem in terms electrical access and reliable plug in point for EVs and many South Africans cannot afford to purchase electric cars, but South Africa is home to a large number vehicle factories that build cars not only for the South African market but for foreign markets as well.

These factories could in the near future shift towards EV manufacturing, which could necessitate the need for South Africa to have be more EV friendly. South Africa needs to actively develop its EV market, and not be reactionary as this may cause a lot of economic problems in the future.

By Mokgethi Mtezuka’

 

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