Monday, July 15, 2024

Saudi Arabia Prepares Infrastructure to Increase Use of Electric Vehicles

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Saudi Arabia is taking rapid steps to enhance the future of the electric car industry towards achieving its national strategy in Vision 2030, by reducing carbon emissions and generating 50 percent of its electrical energy from renewable sources.

The Kingdom recently launched the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Company (EVIQ), the first Saudi brand of electric cars (Ceer), and opened Lucid, the first factory which specializes in the manufacturing of electric vehicles in the Saudi market.

In November 2022, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince and Prime Minister, announced the launch of Ceer. The company will design, manufacture, and sell a range of electric cars including Aedans and Sports Utility Vehicles (SUV’s) for the Gulf region.

Ceer is expected to attract direct foreign investments worth SAR 562 million (about $150 million) to support the national economy, while its direct contribution to the gross domestic product will amount to SAR 30 billion ($8 billion). The company will also provide 30,000 jobs by 2034.

In September 2023, Lucid, the electric car manufacturing company, inaugurated its first and advanced international factory, “AMP-2”, in King Abdullah Economic City in Rabigh Governorate (western Saudi Arabia).

The factory will begin producing approximately 5,000 vehicles to gradually reach around 150,000. It is expected to play a fundamental role in accelerating the achievement of the strategic goal of diversifying the Kingdom’s economy.

In October, the Public Investment Fund (PIF) and the Saudi Electricity Company announced the launch of the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Company (EVIQ).

CEO of EVIQ Mohammed Qazzaz told Asharq Al-Awsat that the company was working to build a wide national network of fast charging stations around the Kingdom, with the goal of reaching more than 5,000 chargers across more than 1,000 stations by 2030.

Qazzaz stated that the role of EVIQ was to empower the sector by starting the process of developing infrastructure and accelerating the pace of demand for electric cars.

He added that the company was established with the aim of supporting and accelerating the growth of the electric vehicle sector by working on developing the infrastructure and establishing a wide network of fast chargers throughout Saudi Arabia.

Automobile expert Majid Al-Sheikhi confirmed to Asharq Al-Awsat that the government was working to prepare the infrastructure to increase the number of electric vehicles on Saudi roads in line with the Kingdom’s goals to reduce carbon emissions.

He added that EVIQ’s goals focused on increasing sales of electric vehicles and contributing to developing and enabling the necessary infrastructure.

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