Lovers of electric vehicles (EVs) and pro-environmentalists would soon enjoy free import duty on electric vehicles, as the government plans to introduce a 100 percent waiver on electricity powered cars.
This is because the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Finance are currently working on a policy to allow for duty free import of the environmentally friendly cars, which according to the International Energy Agency and market watchers, represent the future of the automotive industry.
Although details of the policy are still not known, Minister of Energy, Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh, who disclosed it in Accra, said the government is very keen on promoting their use in the country.
He spoke during the 1st E-mobility conference and exhibition, organised by the Energy Commission under the ‘drive electric initiative’ and said a total import waiver on EVs will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, stimulate demand for the country’s excess power capacity and most importantly, avoid the country becoming a dumping ground for used fossil fuel cars, as the world gradually moves to eco-friendly vehicles.
“My ministry is working with the Ministry of Finance to secure a 100 percent import waiver for electric vehicles,” he said, adding that “we cannot take our climate change mitigation efforts fore granted.”
Globally, there are 10 million electric vehicles in operation worldwide, according to International Energy Agency, with many countries, including Germany, The Netherlands and France, having already adopted policies to promote their use.
Reiterating why the government wants to promote EVs, Dr. Opoku Prempeh said it has become clear that the world is moving away from conventional automotive vehicles to electric vehicles. This shift, he noted, makes it necessary for Ghana to move with the tide so that the country does not become a dumping ground for used fossil fuels cars.
Such a policy fits well into the country’s nationally determined contribution (GH-iNDC) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and Sustainable Development Goals.
The country has been battling with the issue of dumping of over-aged vehicles known for air pollution, with the government having imposed several taxes on importation of such vehicles but to little effect, as the country’s roads are still filled with rickety vehicles.
Meanwhile, given that Ghana’s import duty on cars is among the highest in the sub-region, the lure of bringing in your favourite vehicle free of import charges, is likely to encourage more Ghanaians to shift to EVs, when the policy comes into effect.
The minister also advised individuals and companies interested in installing charging stations to register with the Energy Commission.
So far, the Volta River Authority, Electricity Company of Ghana and GOIL Company Limited, all state-owned, have already publicly expressed interest in playing various roles within the EVs space domestically.