Pakistan dreams of future with electric vehicles but reality is a nightmare

At a time when the world is increasingly moving towards electric mobility, Pakistan does not want to be left behind. Increasing air pollution in many of its cities, coupled with rising oil import bills, are two of several reasons why the country wants to join the electric bandwagon.

File photo used for representational purpose. (REUTERS)
File photo used for representational purpose.

The On-Road Reality

Several Pakistani cities have the dubious distinction of making it to the infamous list of world's most polluted centers. It is a recurring problem, only compounded by the rather shoddy emission standards in place across the country. While safety norms have often been deemed rather lax, emission norms are even more lackluster. Several environmentalists in the country have pointed the accusatory finger at public buses and a massive two-wheeler population as the main driving force behind the country's rising pollution levels.

Also Read : What Japanese firms want from Pakistan government to make hybrid vehicles

According to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, there are three million private vehicles and 20 million two-wheelers and motorized three-wheelers across the country. The number of two-wheelers, in particular, are steadily rising and poses a massive threat to environmental pollution.

Also check these Bikes

Find more Bikes
Battre Electric Mobility Battre Electric Loev (HT Auto photo)
₹59,900**Ex-showroom price
Add to compare
Battre Electric Mobility Battre Electric One (HT Auto photo)
₹74,000**Ex-showroom price
Add to compare
Battre Electric Mobility Battre Electric Iot (HT Auto photo)
₹79,999**Ex-showroom price
Add to compare
Add to compare
Odysse Electric Odysse Electric Hawk (HT Auto photo)
₹ 73,999 - 98,500**Ex-showroom price
Add to compare
Check latest offers
Odysse Electric Evoqis (HT Auto photo)
₹ 1.50 - 1.57 Lakhs* *Ex-showroom price
Add to compare
Check latest offers

Also Read : Tin cans no more? Pakistan looks at creating a standard for locally-made cars

The Proposal for an Alternate Reality

Pakistan reportedly has a rather ambitious plan to go all electric on its roads. Imran Khan, the country's PM, primarily wants to bring down the oil import bill that his country can ill-afford with more and more economic troubles.

As such, a proposal has been floated under which Pakistan is targeting putting 100,000 cars, 500,000 two- and three-wheelers and another 1,000 buses and trucks using electric power on roads by 2025, according to Karachi-based journalist Zofeen Ebrahim. She further informs that the proposal calls for 30% of all new cars, buses and trucks sold in the country by 2030 to be powered by electric energy.

These measures could indeed have a positive impact on not just the environment but stand to considerably bring down Pakistan's dependence on fossil fuel which is almost entirely imported.

The Very Real Roadblocks

For a developing country to shift towards electric mobility is quite a challenge. There is the question of how to get manufacturers to make EVs, how to convince masses to invest in an EV and how to provide supporting infrastructure. These are elementary questions that require a whole lot of brainstorming - especially in a country like Pakistan where the economic conditions have been shambolic and will only worsen due to the current coronavirus outbreak.

It is widely agreed that EVs are easier to manufacture but companies won't make them unless they see a scope for profits over the investments to bring the technology here. After sales for a newer technology would also require investment in training people while the taxation policy for EVs may yet make them too expensive.

In a country which has a per capita income of less than $1,400 per year, taking EVs to the masses is a massive challenge owing to all the costs involved.

And then there is the biggest question of them all - does Pakistan even have the capabilities to produce all the additional electricity that would be required to power such vehicle. Entire provinces have plunged into darkness due to outages which are just a part of life here. Summer months see the situation worsening to scorching levels. In a country where even the PM's office faced a potential power cut due to non-payment of bills, electric energy for vehicles could remains shockingly elusive.

As such, while Pakistan - much like many other countries - may have the right idea of promoting electric mobility, it appears to have no strategy and lacks the resources to implement it.

First Published Date: 10 Apr 2020, 11:14 AM IST
Shopping Bag Shop Now
74% OFF
Microfiber Car Cleaning Soft Brush Ideal as Mop Duster, Washing Brush with Long Handle, Dust Cleaner Car Wash Brush with Handle, Soft Brush Scratch Free, Cleaning Dashboard Curved Design - Grey
Rs. 389 Rs. 1,499
1% OFF
GOODAIR Clear Car Windshield Enhancer | Classic |12 Tablets
Rs. 295 Rs. 299
55% OFF
Antson Portable High Power 2 in 1 Car Vacuum Cleaner | USB Rechargeable Wireless Handheld Car Vacuum Cleaner Traveling, Camping Reusable and Sustainable, Portable,Rechargeable Vacuum (2 in 1)
Rs. 899 Rs. 1,999
64% OFF
QUPET® Portable High Pressure Foot Activated Air Pump Compressor Air Pump for Car, Bike, Bicycle, Football Pump fits Universal Presta and Schrader
Rs. 474 Rs. 1,299

Please provide your details to get Personalized Offers on

Choose city
+91 | Choose city
Choose city
Choose city
Powered by: Acko Logo
Please be noted that any information provided herein above will be received by Acko General Insurance Limited (“Acko”). By mentioning the above information, you agree to provide these details and information to Acko.
By clicking "View Offers" you Agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy

Dear Name

Please verify your mobile number.

+91 | Choose city
Couldn't verify the OTP.
It's either expired or it's incorrect.