Is Australian EV market on the path to boom?

Highlights

  • Several major economies have pledged to wean off from using petrol and diesel vehicles to meet the net-zero emissions target under the Paris Agreement.
  • The transport sector contributes to 20% of Australia’s carbon emissions.
  • The Zero emissions target is driving Electric Vehicle (EV) sales, contributing 1.57% to Australia's total light vehicles sales

The year 2020 saw global sales of electric vehicles surge by 41% to almost 3 million, according to IEA (International Energy Agency). This decline was contrasting to the 6% overall decline in vehicle sales. According to the Global EV Outlook 2021 report released by the International Energy Agency (IEA) in April this year, growth is expected throughout the decade. The reports predict that the number of registered electric vehicles would rise from ten million to 145 million in 2030.

Booming EV numbers in AU

In Australia, 8688 electric vehicles have been sold in the first half of 2021 as per as the Electric Vehicle Council, the national body for the Australian EV industry. This number is representative of 1.57% of the total light vehicle market sales. The country now has over 3000 public chargers, of which 470 are ultra-fast chargers of 50 kW and above.

By 2030, Victoria aims for 50% of new vehicles to be zero-emission. On the other hand, NSW is working towards increasing its sales to 53% within this decade.

Related Read: How Will Electric Vehicles EVS Help Australia Tackle The Climate Crisis?

Few reasons driving the EV market in Australia

  • Robust EV policies in place
  • A proactive approach by state governments. For instance, the NSW state government's introduction of EV strategy was cushioned by almost $500 million investment.
  • More choice to Australian customers
  • More number of charging stations and better services to support e mobility
  • More private investments committed in public charging
  • State and Federal governments promising funds to invest with private investors for setting up more fast chargers.
  • The federal government has announced $24.55 million through the Future Fuels Fund in addition to the $21million through its Australian Renewable Energy Agency.

Related Read: EVs on a shoestring: Australia’s five most affordable electric cars

Is the picture all rosy in the AU market?

Despite reasonable projections for the future, the number of models in Australia will still be below that of other major countries. For instance, UK has more than 130 models. The lower model availability is attributed to unsupportive policies. Thus, global carmakers find it challenging to arrange the supply of models to their Australian offices. The Federal government's efforts are improving towards the cause, but there is scope to do much more.

Outlook for the EV market

Currently, the country has 14 models priced under $65,000 of which six have been launched since last year. Overall the country has 31 EV models for sale. It is projected that there would be 58 passenger models by the end of next year.

Also, with carmakers confirming the upcoming supply of new EV models into the Australian market. 27 new models are expected by 2022 end. Out of 27, 20 are expected to be battery EVs while seven will be plug-in hybrid models.

Bottom Line

Controlling carbon emissions is the only way out for sustainable development. Surely electric vehicles can be game chargers today. Incentivisation to control prices, policy changes, higher investment in charging setups, ensuring more model availability etc., could be some measures that the Australian government can bring about to sustain and further fuel the growing numbers.

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