“Addis Ababa to Board Electric Buses”

The capital will have 1,500 electric buses under Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), a new mass transport routes the city administration is aspiring to build, Abdisa Yadeta, director of Federal Transport Authority, told EBR. The electric buses will be part of the 3,000 new buses the city administration is procuring in a bid to relief the transport shortage in the capital, which is political, economic and diplomatic seat. The EV buses will be linked to a dedicated power grid similar to the light railway.

The Ministry of Transport has established a committee of five, mainly mechanical engineers representing local automotive assemblers, on September 25, 2020. The committee works with the ministry to prepare Electric Vehicles Roadmap, the first in its kind. a study prior to the roadmap is excepted to adequately answer the pros and cons of electric vehicles (EVs), incentive packages, allocation of land and power for charging stations, marketing and awareness creation, subsidies, and how to oust old-fuel-cars in exchange of new EVs.

“electric vehicles will constitute some portion of government’s vehicle procurement in the coming years,” added Abdisa.

Assemblers like Marathon Motors, Tom Electric Cars, San Polo E-bikes are producing EVs, since the last three years. Belayneh Kinde, a business mogul who is just finalizing bus assembly factory, also vied to supply some of the electric buses. However, Fekadu Girma, general manager of Belayab motors, argues policy should be introduced before starting manufacturing the electric vehicles.

Currently, number of car population stood at 1.2 million in Ethiopia, growing with 15.4pct annually. There are close to 3,500 car importers. Cars in Addis Ababa emit 47pct of the 1.5 million-ton annual gas pollution, according International Energy Agency 2018 report.

Ashenafi Endale

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