The Malta Independent 27 November 2021, Saturday

‘Too little too late’ - PN’s reaction to government policies for electric vehicles

Thursday, 26 August 2021, 12:21 Last update: about 4 months ago

The Nationalist Party said that the government’s policies on electric cars are “too little too late” and more work is needed with respect to charging pillars and their infrastructure.

Addressing the media, PN spokesperson for Energy Ryan Callus said that “Labour has lost the perfect opportunity to properly help people who invested in an electric car.”

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Callus argued that although the preferential rate during off peak hours is that of 12.98 cents per unit, the lowest rate Enemalta provides is that of 10.5 cents per unit. “Preferential rate means that it is the best rate one can provide not the market average,” Callus said.

Recently, Opposition Leader Bernard Grech proposed that a PN led government would provide electric car owners the cheapest rate possible during the day by Enemalta. “The Labour government has chosen to disregard this proposal and limit people to an off peak hours system. As a proposal we would like to go a step further and provide people with the lowest rates 24 hours, seven days a week.”

“When someone buys an electric car, they are helping our country in all aspects and they should not be put in a strait-jacket and be limited to when they can charge their car,” Callus said.

Callus said that he fully agrees with the night tariff scheme, “as an opposition spokesperson, I will not be a hypocrite like the Labour government. When ex-Prime Minister Laurence Gonzi proposed the night tariff scheme, the Labour party had opposed it only to regenerate the same proposal in 2021.”

PN spokesperson for green economy David Thake said that the government document “clearly shows that it was not written up in the context of our country. The fact that the document tackles en-route charging in our small country and disregards the lack of infrastructure with regards to charging pillars is absurd.”

“In 8 years of government, the Labour party only managed to entice almost 4,000 people to buy electric cars. The issue lies with the bad infrastructure when it comes to charging pillars. The mentality is that if one does not have a garage, they should not think about getting an electric car,” Thake said.

“As a rule of thumb, the amount of charging pillars needed is 10% of the amount of electric cars present. This means that Malta should have around 400 charging pillars but we are very far off this target,” Thake said.

Thake then shifted his focus to comparing prices and infrastructure with those abroad. Minister Miriam Dalli in her press briefing said that Malta is making use of the cheapest tariffs when compared to Italy, Poland, Norway and Germany.

“The minister is comparing the prices whole sale directly from Enemalta to the price a consumer pays after profit is made by the provider. Obviously there would be a difference in price,” Thake said.

Once on the subject of comparing with Norway, Thake said that if we really want to compare statistics, “Norway last year had 84% of new car registrations being electric cars. Malta under a Labour government only managed to register less than 4,000 in 8 years.”

 

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