EV battery swapping draft policy released by govt think tank Niti Aayog
Government think tank Niti Aayog on Thursday released a draft policy for electric vehicle battery swapping. In the first phase of the implementation of the policy, all metropolitan cities with a population of more than 40 lakh will be prioritised for the development of battery swapping network. All major cities such as state capitals and UT headquarters as well as cities with population above five lakh will be covered under the second phase.
The phases have been decided based on the importance of the two-wheeler and three-wheeler vehicle segments in growing cities. The draft policy also mentions that vehicles with swappable batteries will be sold without a battery on order to offer the benefit of lower purchase costs to potential EV owners.
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The policy allows any individual or entity to set up a battery swapping station at any location, given that they make use of specified technical, safety and performance standards.
The draft policy on EV battery swapping is currently up for consultation, and Niti Aayog has invited comments on it from stakeholders until June 5. The policy was framed after an extensive pre-draft stakeholder discussion with a wide spectrum of stakeholders representing battery swapping operators, battery manufacturers, vehicle OEMs, financial institutions, think tanks and other experts.
During the Budget speech 2022-23, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced that the Centre would be introducing a battery swapping policy and interoperability standards in order to enhance the EV ecosystem in the country while promoting faster adoption of electric vehicles. The decision was taken considering the constraint of space in urban areas for setting up EV charging stations at scale.
After the official statement from Sitharaman in her budget speech in February, Niti Aayog had held an inter-ministerial discussion to formulate a robust and comprehensive battery swapping policy framework during the month.
(with inputs from PTI)