Spain Pledges ?590 Million To Boost Use Of Electric Vehicles

Zapatero said that it expects some 70,000 electric cars will be in circulation in Spain by 2012. Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said that Spain hoped to have 20,000 electrical vehicles by 2011, 50,000 by 2012 and 250,000 in circulation by 2014.

Automaker Renault agreed last year to make the Spain’s first electrical car in 2011 at its Valladolid plant. The Strategic Plan for the Electric Vehicles has been laid down in a document, that details the various stages for the introduction of the electric car, with provision for 250,000 units by 2014, including rechargeable hybrids.

The draft plan proposes a new electricity tariff, which would take advantage of the optimum hours for recharging and for a better functioning of the system.

According to the outline plan, there would need to be 62,000 private recharging points (in people’s homes), 263,000 in fleet car parks, 12,150 in public car parks and 6,200 on the public highway by 2014.

From 2011, it is anticipated that there would be a quick-charge point for every 400 charging stations for private cars, giving a total of 1,260 charging stations of this type by 2014.

Zapatero, who was speaking at an event presenting the government’s strategy for electric cars, said these types of vehicles are key to reducing carbon emissions and Spain’s dependency on importing energy sources. "It is also a symbol of what Spain’s industrial policies should focus on from now on: innovation and sustainability," Zapatero said.

The largest amount of aid included in the plan is a 20% subsidy of the purchase price of an electric car, up to a maximum amount of €6,000. Spain now has 2,000 electric cars in circulation.

Other measures to boost sales include discounts on the price of recharging vehicles at night and credit lines aimed at companies that develop electric car technology.

The plan also targets having 250,000 electric cars in circulation by 2014, and up to a million if gasoline-electric hybrid cars are included.