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Europe: Government offering 25% grant on purchase of electric vehicles

The government will be offering a 25% grant, up to a maximum of €4,000, on the purchase of electric vehicles (M1 category – meaning passenger vehicles comprising no more than eight seats), and it plans to install up to 100 charging points across Malta and Gozo.

Addressing a press conference at the Grand Hotel Excelsior, Resources and Rural Affairs Minister George Pullicino said electric vehicles can be up to 2.5 times more efficient than their counterparts that are powered by internal combustion engine vehicles.

“There have been so many developments in the electric vehicle sector that you can cover about 130 kilometres on a full charge,” said Mr Pullicino.

As for the costs to power vehicles, the cost for conventional cars is about €0.07c per kilometre, while that for electric vehicles is about €0.02,5, and electric vehicle maintenance costs are also lower.

“We had reduced the licence for electric vehicles from €75 to €10, and introduced preferential parking for these vehicles,” said the minister, adding that the government now hopes to make bigger strides to further encourage the use of these ‘clean’ vehicles, of which there are currently only about 30 on the road.

Yesterday, the ministry also announced details of the project ‘DemoEV’, aimed at calculating energy efficiency between conventional and electric vehicles, estimating any differences in costs between the two types of vehicles. Volunteers from the public will be encouraged to use an electric vehicle for a three-month period.

It will cost €2 million and will be part-funded by the EU’s Life+ programme. Two calls for tenders have been published for the purchase of 24 electric vehicles will be used during the course of the project.

The data collected will also be used for a comparative analysis on the carbon savings of recharging being used by households which make use of PV panels and those that do not.

Volunteers will only need to pay for the consumption of electricity required to use the vehicle (instead of paying for fuel as they would with the vehicle they normally drive). The vehicles that will be used for this exercise will come in different sizes and will also include commercial vehicles such as vans.

Volunteers will need to have a valid driving licence, have owned and driven a vehicle for at least five years, be at least 25 years old, and have a clean police conduct. Some of the volunteers will be chosen from companies and commercial establishments, and a number of volunteers will be people who have photovoltaic panels installed in their household.


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