Amid rising oil prices and pollution concerns, the Kerala government has set a target of putting 10 million electric vehicles (EVs) on road by 2022.
The state has rolled out an electric vehicle policy (EVP) studded with tax holidays and creation of common charging infrastructure.
Autorickshaws will be the frontrunners of the shift to EVs as the state aims complete electrification of vehicles by 2030.
Though Kerala had been mulling a e-vehicle policy since as early as 1988, the trigger came only after Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and Telangana expatiated their EV plans recently.
In a backward integration move, Kerala is also planning to go into a production facility of e-vehicles, where state PSU Kerala Automobiles will tie up in a PPP model with private vehicle makers, to manufacture electric three-wheelers.
“New permits for three-wheelers will be given only to EVs at least in the three main cities, Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and Kozhikode. Top priority will be for the conversion of autorickshaws and stage carriers. In next stage, the focus will be on electric buses and boats,” Kerala transport commissioner K Padmakumar told FE.
The newly registered EVs will get a three-year exemption in road tax. Manufacturers will be entitled to electricity at concessional tariff, tax breaks, priority in allotment of land and investment allowance under Centre’s ‘Make in India’ policy.
The current plan is to adopt swappable battery model as the prime mode of battery recharging. “We’ve been roped in to set up 20 charging stations in three pilot districts and 150 swapping stations of 2W/3W/4W capacity,” said Kerala State Electricity Board chairman NS Pillai.
The Kerala Cabinet has assigned a task force to develop e-mobility road-map, with a pilot fleet of 2,00,000 two-wheelers, 50,000 three-wheelers, 1,000 goods carriers, 3,000 buses and 100 ferry boats, ready and in operation, by 2020.