Rapid electric charging points will be rolled out across strategic road links in Wales as part of £2million of funding for the charging network, Economy and Transport Secretary Ken Skates has announced.
The £2million funding, secured as part of the two-year Budget agreement between the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru, will be used to help create a publicly accessible national network of rapid charging points by 2020.
The funding will be focused on locations on or near strategic Welsh road networks, with a particular emphasis on North-South and East-West journeys.
The Transport Secretary Ken Skates said he had also tasked officials to explore the feasibility of funding charging points at park and ride facilities and at taxi ranks.
He confirmed he was looking at a national concession model to deliver and run the network, whereby a contractor would have the exclusive right to operate, maintain and carry out investment in the network. He envisaged the contract would be procured and overseen by Transport for Wales (TfW).
Ken Skates said:
“We are committed to promoting the use of electric and hybrid vehicles in the transition from petrol and diesel.
This funding for electric charging points will be a massive boost to the network and will help motorists who want to use electric vehicles for longer journeys.
This could prove to be a catalyst for change in our efforts to support the use of electric vehicles. We have chosen to focus on the North/South and East/West routes as we realise their importance for travelling around Wales.
In these challenging times it is more important than ever that we work to improve sustainable transport links, to increase our low carbon transport options and to make Wales as accessible as we can.
This funding is a clear demonstration of our commitment towards mitigating the impacts of climate change alongside reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and improving air quality.”
There are currently 500 publicly accessible charging points in Wales and 2,500 plug in vehicles.
With the number of new electric and hybrid car registrations in Wales having increased by 35% in 2017 the Welsh Government hopes that this latest investment will help to meet the rising demand and encourage more people in Wales to invest in electric vehicles.