Czech power company CEZ has recently opened a charging station for electric vehicles (EVs) in the capital city Prague. It is its 25 th such unit in the country, and the first built at a McDonald's outlet. BMI believes that increasing the availability of charging infrastructure will increase the uptake of EV technology over the longer term.
The fast food chain, which operates around 90 outlets across the Czech Republic, is an integral part of CEZ's electric mobility strategy. McDonald's outlets are primarily located in urban locations, but also on highways, providing ideal locations for EV charging stations.
The EV market in the Czech Republic remains very small, with an estimated 200 EV in use. Many of these are fleet vehicles. CEZ hopes to open 50 EV charging stations in the country by 2013. BMI believes that a substantial barrier to greater EV uptake (in the Czech Republic, but also more broadly across many markets) is the current paucity of a strong charging infrastructure. We believe that the increasing availability of such stations will increase the uptake of EVs across the country.
Despite increases in the charging infrastructure, we believe that increases in EV use will be relatively slow over the medium term, although we maintain our bullish view on the sector over the longer term. For example, Estonia has recently invested in a nationwide EV charging infrastructure and the government offers generous incentives, but uptake is still low. BMI believes that these policies will eventually bear fruit, and we expect to see strong EV sales over the longer term ( see our online service, June 22, 'Nationwide EV Charging Infrastructure And Generous Incentives Yet To Boost EV Sales').
BMI believes that the automotives industry must work with national governments to incentivise consumers towards electric and alternative fuels vehicles ( see 'Renault-Nissan Aim To Kick-Start France EV Infrastructure', June 13).