Germany’s scheme to roll out a network of user-friendly infrastructure for charging electric vehicles across the country is in line with EU state aid rules, the EU’s executive arm, the European Commission, said on February 13.

Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said electric vehicles could provide real benefits to society by reducing harmful emissions and noise pollution.

“The German support scheme will encourage consumers and businesses to use electric vehicles. It will provide the necessary infrastructure in a cost-effective way in line with EU state aid rules,” Vestager said.

At a cost of in total €300 million over four years, this measure promotes the installation of new standard and high-speed charging stations for electric vehicles, as well as the extension of the existing infrastructure, the European Commission said in a press release, adding that the scheme is open to all, including companies, individuals and local authorities, and support will be awarded progressively through an open and transparent tender procedure. It requires that the electricity for the charging infrastructure comes from renewable energy sources.

The Commission said it considers that this measure will encourage a significant uptake of electric vehicles and therefore make a major contribution towards meeting the common interest of reducing emissions and improving air quality. It addresses a real gap in the market without unduly affecting competition in the Single Market.

The measure will also support the European Strategy for low-emission mobility, in particular in terms of the objective of speeding up the deployment of low-emission alternative energy for transport and contributing to the decarbonisation agenda, the Commission concluded.

(, February 13, 2017)

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