World’s biggest oil exporter aims for 30% cars in its capital to be EVs by 2030

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World’s biggest oil exporter Saudi Arabia aims that at least 30% of cars in its capital Riyadh would be electric by the end of the decade as the country paves a green path to reduce carbon emissions that lead to climate change. Announced at the Saudi climate conference, the target is part of a plan to halve carbon emissions in the city.

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At the conference, the country’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman also pledged to eliminate the emissions from within the country’s borders by 2060. The goal to boost electric vehicle adoption is one key part of this target as more and more countries are trying to reduce or phase-out internal combustion engines vehicles. 

Countries such as China and UK have already set targets to phase out fossil-fuel powered vehicles. While the former aims for 25% of new vehicles to be electric by 2025, the latter plans to end sales of new fossil-fuel vehicles by 2030.

(Also read | Sales of electric, plug-in hybrid vehicles soar in 3rd quarter in European Union)

Currently, it is not clear if all of Saudi Arabia will follow into the footsteps of Riyadh or if the capital city will eventually want to make electric vehicles vehicles mandatory and phase-out combustion engine vehicles. “We want to make sure that we reduce our carbon footprint, and that’s the best way to do it,” Al-Rasheed, president of the Royal Commission for Riyadh City, said in an interview.

Interestingly, Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund has been investing money in EVs for several years now, including in EV startup Lucid Motors Inc. The company which is based in California is also in talks with the Saudi fund to build an EV factory in the country, Bloomberg reported, quoting sources.

Further, Australia’s EV Metals Group Plc also recently announced a project to invest $3 billion in Saudi Arabia to process minerals that are used in EV batteries.

(with inputs from Bloomberg)

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