Three quarters of electric cars are sold in the four richest EU countries, and half of all public charging stations are even in just two EU countries. Photo: BMW There are currently over 300,000 public chargers in the EU. To meet the declared climate goals, however, we need 6.8 million of them by 2030. Politicians like to talk a lot about electric cars, and many pretend that they are the only alternative for the European Union. But the numbers won’t let go – most countries in the EU are simply not rich enough to meet the ambitious goals of politicians. Neither in the number of electric cars nor in the sufficient infrastructure they need. A new analysis of data from the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) shows that half of all charging points for electric cars in the European Union, of which there are currently just over 300,000, are concentrated in just two countries – the Netherlands (90,000 chargers) and Germany ( 60,000). These two countries make up less than 10% of the total area of the EU. The other half of all chargers are scattered across the remaining 25 countries, covering 90% of the region’s area. And this uneven construction of infrastructure is one of the most serious problems of the EU in the development of electromobility. Read more The dream of cheap electric car driving is fading away. And not only in Germany According to the European Association of Electric Vehicle Manufacturers, the difference between countries with a developed infrastructure for electric cars and those that lag behind in this area is huge. To illustrate: the Netherlands, which is the country with the most developed infrastructure – has almost 1,600 times more charging points than the country with the weakest (Cyprus with only 57 charging points). In fact, the Netherlands alone has as many chargers as 23 other EU member states combined. It looks as if the development of electrical infrastructure is establishing new frontiers in Europe, but this time they are not dictated by politics, but by modern technology. The difference between the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the countries of Western Europe has significantly widened. For example, a large country like Romania – about six times the size of the Netherlands – has only 0.4 percent of all charging stations in the EU. And it’s not just chargers. Another ACEA analysis shows that the growth of the electric car market is directly related to the gross domestic product per capita. In other words, in addition to insufficient infrastructure, the main obstacle to the development of electric cars in the European Union is their affordability for consumers. Read more Will electric cars soon run out of ‘juice’? The networks did not count on them According to ACEA data, ten member states of the Union still have a share of electrically chargeable cars on the new car market of less than 3%. These are countries with an average gross domestic product per capita of less than 17,000 euros. Almost three quarters of electric car sales are concentrated in the four Western European countries with the highest GDP. “There is a clear difference in affordability between Central and Eastern Europe and Western Europe, as well as a significant difference between North and South, which runs across the continent,” states ACEA. According to the association, the lowest share of electric cars is in Cyprus, Lithuania, Estonia, Croatia and Poland. On the opposite side of the ranking are Sweden, the Netherlands, Finland, Denmark and Germany. Read more Stellantis: We have to make electric cars cheaper by 40%. If not, the market will collapse Without subsidies, the availability of electric cars in economically weaker EU countries is an almost insurmountable problem, but politicians and activists turn a blind eye. What can be solved is the building of electric charging infrastructure. Although there has been a significant increase in the number of charging points in the EU (by 180 percent) in the last five years, their total number, slightly exceeding 300,000, is actually well below what the EU needs to meet its stated climate targets, namely to achieve a 55% reduction in CO2 emissions in passenger car transport, up to 6.8 million public charging stations would be needed by 2030. In other words, in less than 10 years we have to record more than 22-fold growth in this area. And that is hardly achievable.
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