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£106m funding boost to accelerate UK EV development

The Prime Minister is earmarking a £106m funding package to help drive an “ambitious mission” for the UK to become a world leader in low-emission technology.

Councils urged to encourage take-up of EVs

The PM’s plans are said to represent an “ambitious mission” for UK low-emission technology development

The announcement, being made today at the Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Summit in Birmingham as part of the modern Industrial Strategy, will help drive projects for green battery, vehicle and refuelling technology.

The move is being accompanied by more than £500m of investment from industry as well as a new international declaration on low emissions intended to forge the way for the worldwide deployment of green vehicles, and the introduction of smart, zero-emission infrastructure.

The Prime Minister is expected to say: “These measures will drive the design, use, uptake and infrastructure necessary for cleaner, greener vehicles – and in doing so, it will help us drastically reduce a major contributor to our global warming emissions, as we seek to meet the Paris Climate Change Agreement.”

Matt Dyer, Managing Director of LeasePlan UK, welcomed the news, saying: “Today’s announcement is a great step forward for Britain’s zero emission future, and we strongly welcome the Government’s continued support. This investment will go a long way towards delivering the necessary infrastructure to expand the charging network, as well as making electric vehicles both more accessible and more cost effective.

“As an industry, we are tackling the zero-emission challenge and this investment from the Government further expresses Britain’s intent to join the charge for lower emission vehicles. It is now time for the UK to join Norway and the Netherlands as leaders in this field.”

Announcements by industry at the event include a further £50m investment at Aston Martin’s new St Athan facility in Wales, which will become its centre for electrification and the home of the Lagonda brand.

The EV Network, a UK-based charging station development company, is developing 200 fast-charging stations throughout the UK, representing an investment of around £200m. The company has joined forces with Leclanché who will be supplying the battery storage solutions to the stations, and the two firms will develop an EV Charging Centre of Excellence in Warwick

In addition, Lex Autolease is launching a new £1m fund for electric vehicle leases to incentivise zero-emission driving. The funding will be available to business and personal customers and is expected to help customers make the decision to go greener, backed up by electric vehicle support and guidance from Lex. The leasing giant said the move could increase the total number of pure electric vehicles registered next year by around 8% while also doubling the size of its own pure electric fleet.

 

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.