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Russian Government Increases Investment for Electric Vehicles

The plan envisages an investment of $10.5Bln by 2030.

Anton Kardashov / Moskva News Agency

The Russian government plans to invest 777 billion rubles ($10.5 billion) into electric and hydrogen vehicle development by 2030, according to documents obtained by the Vedomosti news outlet.

In the next nine years Russia’s electric vehicle (EV) share of the auto market could grow from 0.05% to 15%, officials at the Ministry of Economic Development said. By 2030 there could be 1.5 million EVs on Russian roads, supported by 20,000 new charging stations, according to the plan.

Last week ministry officials said they planned to invest $5.5 billion into EV development, according to the Kommersant news outlet. But now Vedomosti reporters claim that they’ve seen a new version of the plan, and in that version the government aims to invest $10.5 billion, almost twice as much. The plan allocates $1.7Bln of it to the development of hydrogen-powered vehicles.

“Leading automakers, globally and in Russia, are announcing new electric vehicle lines. A lot of them plan to stop making internal combustion engine cars by 2030,” said Ruslan Edelgeriev, climate adviser to President Putin. “In the next 20-30 years everyone will transition to electric vehicles.”

Yet in 2019 only 353 EVs were sold on Russian markets, and although that number doubled last year, it was still only 687. According to the plan, in 2022 EVs share of the Russian car market will reach 1.7 percent – almost 30 times more than in 2020.

In 2020 Russians bought EVs made by Tesla, Porsche, Nissan Chevrolet, and other global carmakers. There is no EV manufacturing in Russia yet, although Ford is aiming to open the first Russian EV-production factory in 2022. In 2020 local automaker KamAZ presented Kama-1, which could become the first Russian-made EV on the market. But any EV development in Russia “obviously requires government support,” company representatives said.

In neighboring Norway, electric vehicles accounted for 54% of all new car sales in 2020, thanks to a government tax policy. Ten years ago, EVs accounted for just 1% of the market, according to the Norwegian Road Federation.

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