Interview with Philippe Vangeel, Secretary-General of The European Association for Electromobility (AVERE), about the European market for e-mobility
Mr. Vangeel, in which European regions is the market for e-mobility currently developing particularly rapidly?
The biggest market for an electric vehicle in Europe is, of course, Norway, as they have set in place a policy that makes the choice to buy electric cars obviously. In other countries, we see a significant increase in sales in urban areas and specifically in those cities where ever we have a push for Low Emission Zones, like, for example, Amsterdam.
Are there particular reasons why these regions are leading the way?
These areas, be it they are countries, regions or cities, have sent a strong long-term political signal, showing a real commitment to zero-emission transport solutions. This commitment makes customers confident that this is a long-term approach and they think different on their mobility choices. One more example of how this political decision-making drive helps the mass uptake of EV is the plan from different European urban realities to ban internal combustion engines cars completely.
What do you see as the biggest obstacles to e-mobility in Europe?
We don’t really see many obstacles to the mass uptake of e-mobility anymore. The market is clearly there with sales and demands going up every year. The industry is now ready to answer in a short time span by providing many new EVs models available for purchase. Many areas have already established a good charging network. Policymakers are more committed than ever to a climate-friendly agenda, as exemplified by the New Green Deal for Europe proposed by the European Commission. The combination of these factors really makes for the best environment for e-mobility that we have seen until now.
What does it take to overcome remaining obstacles?
I think the main areas where we need more efforts are in increasing education across the value chain of producers of mobility solutions and more consumer awareness of the benefits of owning an electric vehicle.
In the discussion about electric vehicles in Germany, the problem of raw materials is repeatedly raised. How do you assess the debate?
The world is changing, new sustainable mobility solutions are here to stay. Europe needs to ensure a steady supply of sustainable raw materials to maintain its position as a competitive player in the mobility market.
E-mobility only makes sense if vehicles run on green electricity. From your point of view, what new business models will this open up for companies?
E-mobility alone is not the end of it all: a mix of solutions is required. The sources of the energy we use should be green but luckily in Europe every year the energy-supply becomes greener. In this context, smart charging and V2X are not just existing solutions but are also the future business models.
What importance do you attach to the Power2Drive trade fair in the restructuring of the transport sector?
The Power2Drive trade fair is a great moment for industries from the energy and the mobility sectors to meet and increase the synergies. Areas where a very needed exchange and drive is key to success in this evolving market.Interview with Philippe Vangeel, Secretary-General of The European Association for Electromobility (AVERE), about the European market for e-mobility.