European Chamber seeks ‘new energy’ vehicle backing

Staff reporter, with CNA

Fri, Mar 13, 2015 - Page 3

The European Chamber of Commerce Taiwan earlier this week said that the government should accelerate the development of so-called “new energy” vehicles as part of efforts to achieve a green economy.

The automotive industry is making tremendous efforts to reduce carbon emissions and lower energy consumption, while many advanced technologies applied to new-energy vehicles have proven to be effective in such initiatives, the chamber’s automotive committee said.

To encourage the use of these various new technologies — hybrid electric vehicles, plug-in hybrids and battery-electric vehicles — the industry is calling for the implementation of incentive policies to promote the development and adoption of environmentally friendly automotive technologies, the committee said.

However, the nation’s incentive program focuses on purely electric vehicles and neglects how the relevant electric-vehicle infrastructure and standards have not been put in place, the committee said.

“This might compromise the result of the government’s efforts to promote environmentally friendly automotive technologies. Moreover, Taiwan is lagging behind several Asian countries in [electric vehicle]-related development,” the committee said in a statement outlining the chamber’s results for last year and outlook for this year.

It urged the government to speed the development of electric-vehicle infrastructure, especially charging stations, following clearly defined technical standards, to facilitate the development of electric vehicles.

The chamber, which organized more than 180 events last year, represents more than 820 individual members and more than 400 companies and organizations.

With more than US$33 billion in direct foreign investment, European business remains the largest group of foreign investors in Taiwan.

Through a network of 28 industry and support committees, the chamber addresses specific concerns and provides recommendations to the government to improve the business environment.