Electric Vehicle Charge Stations Key to Drive Nationwide Switch

A minister has appealed to the private sector to invest in EV charge stations nationwide to encourage Cambodians to switch to the environmentally friendly alternatives
Minister of Public Works and Transport, Sun Chanthol opens a new charging station in Siem Reap, September 15, 2022. Kiripost via MPWT
Minister of Public Works and Transport, Sun Chanthol opens a new charging station in Siem Reap, September 15, 2022. Kiripost via MPWT

Authorities have urged the private sector to invest in electric vehicle (EV) power stations and called on Cambodians to switch to electric vehicles to cut costs and become more environmentally friendly.

At the launch ceremony of an EV charging station in Siem Reap on Wednesday, Minister of Public Works and Transport, Sun Chanthol, suggested the private sector invest in the installation of EV power stations nationwide, especially at gas stations.

He added this will ensure the full supply of electricity to vehicles, reducing fuel costs and harm to the environment.

He added that using electric cars has many advantages over petrol vehicles, as the import duty is lower.

“Using electric vehicles saves up to three times more energy than fuel-efficient vehicles, while maintenance costs are lower due to the smaller number of electric vehicle parts. The sound is quiet, too,” the minister said.

He added that besides EVs, the ministry is encouraging motorcycles users to switch to electric alternatives. UNDP has agreed to provide 30 motorcycles to the ministry, which plans to buy 30 to 50 more to use.

He hopes that the private sector partners will develop electric power stations to encourage the population to start buying them.

Heng Kim Hong​, an advocacy officer at Cambodian Youth Network, said people who have been frequently use cars can cause the high emissions of fuel. Cambodia also faces issues with traffic congestion and other factors that create high emissions in the atmosphere as well as waste on fuel consumption.

“In the short-term, the government should reduce taxes so people can afford to buy new cars that are less polluting to the environment,” Kim Hong said.

“If Cambodia is not yet fully capable of producing or not yet independent in energy, it will be difficult to use because there may be a shortage in the field of power generation and independence. Cambodia must also be prepared with suppliers and requires a more comprehensive Fast Charge,” he added.

In the first seven months of 2022, 305 electric vehicles were registered in Cambodia, an increase over 2021.

As of September 14, the ministry has opened three EV charging stations at the office of the Ministry of Public, Work and Transport, and others in Sihanoukville and Siem Reap. A fourth is planned in Battambang with the assistance of UNDP.