Joint press release by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, the Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety
The National Platform for Electric Mobility (NPE) today presented its second report to Germany's federal government. The report contains the NPE's recommendations for future government policy in the field of electric mobility. The government is grateful to the NPE for its work. In the government's view, taking a dialogue-based approach, which brings together companies, the business community, researchers and civil-society representatives, has been the right course of action. This enabled everyone involved to agree on a common path towards introducing electric mobility.
The government will adopt a new programme for electric mobility on 18 May 2011. This will provide a comprehensive description of the measures it plans to carry out. The programme is intended to bring Germany closer to the target of having one million electric vehicles on its roads by 2020.
Dr Rösler, Federal Economics Minister, said that "Forward-looking technologies such as electric mobility are key to the success of our economy. We want to be at the forefront of global efforts in electric mobility. The guiding principle here is that competition and the market are the best drivers of innovation. For this reason, businesses must bear the main responsibility themselves. What our new government programme does is to put the right framework in place for this to happen."
Dr Ramsauer, Federal Transport Minister, commented: "We are backing an intelligent policy mix comprising measures to promote research among businesses and incentives for citizens. At this decisive stage of preparing technologies for the market, our task is to prevent distortions of competition and undesirable developments. I too am therefore strongly opposed to expensive programmes of financial assistance for buyers. No country can afford to engage in a costly race to provide the highest subsidies, particularly when budgets are tight. We need marketable, useable products that work in practice and are attractive to our citizens. That is why I welcome the National Platform's recommendation for showcases that get the message across. The positive experience we have already gained in our model regions will provide a reference and a foundation for further work."
The government sees research and development as a particular area of need, as does the NPE. To accommodate this, it will provide an additional ¤1bn to fund research and development between now and the end of the current parliamentary term. This equates to a doubling of the government's efforts in this area.
Professor Schavan, Federal Research Minister, argued that "Electric mobility's success in the market will not be decided by who offers the largest package of subsidies, but who has the best technical expertise. For this reason, we are now boosting our support for research in this field. We will be focussing on battery research in particular."
The report neatly sums up the need to link electric mobility with renewable energies. Doing so is the only way to harness this technology's potential to protect the environment.
Dr Röttgen, Federal Environment Minister, stated that "The clear commitment on the part of German industry to power electric vehicles exclusively with electricity from additional renewable sources is good environmental policy and will boost acceptance of this new technology. Electric mobility is acting as an additional incentive to expand renewable energies and playing a pivotal role in the transformation of our energy supply. Were it not for electric mobility, the transport industry would be unable to make the necessary contribution towards protecting the climate. The government's programme to promote electric mobility creates the right conditions for an innovative and future-oriented technology to take root in Germany."