By Felix Khanoba
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo, has expressed excitement over the production of electric vehicles by Stallion Group in Nigeria.
The minister, who unveiled one of the electric vehicles named Kona in Abuja on Friday, commended Stallion Group and its subsidiary, Hyundai Motors for pioneering production of such cars in the country.
He said the ministry in collaboration with the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC) had begun a plan for a migration from the use of conventional vehicles (powered by fuel and diesel) to alternative powered vehicles, in consideration of environmental degradation caused by global warming.
Adebayo unveiled the electric vehicle on Friday, together with his Works and Housing counterpart, Mr. Babatunde Fashola and other dignitaries in Abuja.
Speaking on some of the advantages of using electric cars, Adebayo, who was joined at the event by the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, posited that the vehicles would reduce queues at filling stations as well as ensure a more friendly environment.
He said: “Electric cars, trucks and buses are now being built globally, their advantages in terms of zero emission of greenhouse gases, fewer components to service and maintain, will make it suitable for a developing economy like Nigeria.”
Adebayo also said that his ministry was working closely with NADDC to review the nation’s Auto Policy, to create a robust environment for players in the sector.
He pointed out that already the NADDC, in its efforts to establish the pioneer electric vehicle charging stations in the country, had begun partnerships with the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, University of Lagos and the Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto.
He said, “All that will be required is setting up charging stations in our respective homes, at strategic locations like shopping malls, event centres and other social and economic clusters in major cities and subsequently nationwide.
“The National Automotive Design and Development Council is working on this.”
Also speaking, the Director General of NADDC, Mr. Jelani Aliyu, said as of 2019, over 1 billion dollars had been invested in the Nigerian automobile sector, with over 400,000 installed capacities by both local and international investors.
Aliyu announced that NADDC had built six automobile training centres across the country, which would leverage on electric vehicle technology transfer.
He expressed the resolve of the Council to ensure that 30 per cent of the passenger vehicles become electric vehicles by 2025.
According to him, “Our target is to have 30 per cent of all passenger cars produced in Nigeria be electric by 2025.
“The electric vehicle pilot programme would allow us to gather the necessary empirical data needed towards an electric vehicle policy which will further enhance investment into their production and create its sustainability,” he said.