Electric vehicles (EVs) are considered the future of automobiles. With rapidly rising sales, EV penetration in global markets is increasing year after year and will begin eclipsing ICE (internal combustion engine) car sales in the next few years.
However, like many other areas, Pakistan is way behind when it comes to EV adoption. Despite bold govt claims and an EV Policy put in place, there is no meaningful advancement when it comes to embracing electric vehicles in our country.
Recently, a video of a freshly imported Tesla parked at an EV charging facility went viral on social media, much to the owner’s distress as the station was without electricity.
Moreover, one can see a big “Rs 70 per unit” rate sheet installed on the charging booth, which is a lot and will nullify the benefits of having an EV in Pakistan.
Power outages are common in Pakistan, regardless of summer or winter. Domestic & even industrial sectors experience hours of load sheddings each day in most areas of the country. But when it comes to electric vehicles, if the EV charging station itself has no electricity, or it goes out of power during charging, how can we think of transitioning to EVs, considering the fact that the world is exploring wind, solar & other means to generate electricity while Pakistan still largely relies on fossil fuels for expensive electricity production.
We are already way behind when it comes to automobiles, be it safety standards, built quality, emissions, fuel efficiency, or getting up-to-date vehicles as most of the cars introduced in Pakistan are globally retired models. We still adhere to Euro 2 when the world is already at Euro 5/6 and is preparing to shift to Euro 7. This makes us no less than 22 years behind the rest of the world in terms of emission standards, which is among the core reasons that amplify our environmental miseries.
EVs are seen as a great way to reduce dependency on fossil fuels that not only help combat environmental impacts but also reduce a country’s fuel import bill. That’s exactly what was touted when the EV policy was being formulated.
However, along with a useless 50kWh battery cap, which is there only to favor the existing ICE players, the uninterrupted availability of electricity at charging stations is the key to maximizing the EV adoption rate in Pakistan. Without that, expecting to see widespread use of electric vehicles in our country will remain a distant dream.
A computer animation professional with over 23 years of industry experience having served in leading organizations, TV channels & production facilities in Pakistan. An avid car enthusiast and petrolhead with an affection to deliver quality content to help shape opinions. Formerly written for PakWheels as well as major publications including Dawn. Founder of CarSpiritPK.com