Push for electric vehicles will shift from China to Europe in 2020
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    Push for electric vehicles will shift from China to Europe in 2020

    The number of public charging posts will hit 1.2 million globally. Credit: Pikrepo

    In 2020, the push to electrify vehicles and transportation will shift from China to Europe, as both governments and manufacturers aim to cut carbon emission, according to a new report.

    Global car companies will sell about 2.5 million electric vehicles this year, which is an increase of 20% compared to 2019, according to the ‘EVs and New Mobility: Trends to Watch in 2020’ report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) researchers.

    Even though China will continue to dominate the global electric vehicle market, the Chinese government’s decision to reduce subsidies, and the decline in electric car sales that followed, will help shift the growth to Europe, according to BNEF.

    New models from companies such as Volkswagen AG, which wants to be “on the front line of the electric vehicle revolution” according to its CEO, will help sell 800,000 electric cars in Europe by the end of 2020, which would be 60% from 2019, according to the report.

    “The long-term future is really bright, but in the short term we are expecting growth to be relatively slow,” said BNEF analyst Colin McKerracher in the report. “We are still in the middle of this transition, from a market driven by direct subsidies toward one driven by a combination of real consumer demand and other big policy mechanisms,” he added.

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    The continuing cost cuts for lithium-ion batteries will be crucial for the European rollout of an electric car network, as prices will hit about $135 (€121) per kilowatt-hour on average, which is about 13% lower than in 2019 ($156, or €140), and 89% lower than in 2011 ($917, or €823). Additionally, the increasing scale of battery production and more efficiency in the design of battery packs will cut the costs even further.

    As both governments and energy companies are working to expand the necessary infrastructure for electric vehicles, the number of public charging posts will hit 1.2 million globally, up from 880,000 in 2018.

    However, with the increase of electric vehicles hooking up to the grid, it will become increasingly important for utilities as well as governments to understand how to manage the associated swings in energy demand.

    Even though there are over 10,000 charging posts in Belgium, almost half of them are owned by a company, and about 2,500 are owned by private individuals, leaving only about 3,000 public stations, according to EU data. However, the Flemish government is aiming to build 5,000 more stations by the end of 2020, reports De Tijd.

    Maïthé Chini
    The Brussels Times