Leading central public sector enterprises (CPSEs) and a clutch of private sector firms have firmed up plans to set up electric vehicle (EV) charging facilities across the country, a move that will quicken the proliferation of these environmentally-benign vehicles, help curb the rising vehicular emissions and reduce the carbon intensity of the India’s gross domestic product. At the forefront of the move are state-run energy firms IOCL, HPCL, NTPC and private players like Tata Power and Reliance Industries.
Among the state-run firms, India’s largest fuel retailer Indian Oil Corporation (IOCL) has recently announced that it will install EV charging facilities at its 10,000 retail outlets over the next three years. The announcement was made just a few days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared the country’s ambitious 2070 net zero target at the COP26 summit in Glasgow.
IOCL’s decision followed state-run Hindustan Petroleum Corporation’s (HPCL’s) announcement in mid-September that it would commission 5,000 EV charging stations in the next three years.
Analysts at Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) noted that “In most EV partnerships, the retailers are playing a passive role by offering private players space at existing outlets,” adding that “they will have to continue relying on external partners for some time as none of them are doing any significant in-house development”.
IOCL, which currently has 448 EV charging stations and 30 battery swapping stations across the country, said that it has collaborated with a plethora of firms including Tata Power, NTPC, Fortum, Hyundai, Tech Mahindra, BHEL and Ola for setting up EV chargers at fuel stations. HPCL has also signed an agreement with Tata Power to set up EV charging stations at its petrol pumps.
Tata Power currently runs 878 public EV charging points, and aims to have more than 1 lakh such charging points by FY25-end. The company is mainly pursuing three channels to materialse its EV charging ambitions: home charging, public charging and fleet owners.
Expressing its desire to become a leading EV charging infrastructure player in India, Reliance Industries Ltd also recently said that its fuel and mobility joint venture with bp — Reliance BP Mobility (RBML) — will also set up a network of electric vehicle charging stations and battery swap stations at it’s the fuel stations under the Jio-BP brand.
State-run power generator NTPC had earlier said that it plans to set up 400 EV chargers at various locations across the country. By FY21 end, NTPC had established 142 EV charging stations, and its subsidiary NTPC Vidyut Vyapar NigamL (NVVN) was allotted the task of adding 204 EV charging stations in eight cities under the Centre’s ‘Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles’ (FAME) scheme. NVVN has also signed an memorandum of understanding with the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation for building EV charging infrastructure on Mumbai- Pune and Mumbai-Nagpur highways.
According to analysts at UBS, electric two-wheelers are expected to account for around 10% of total two-wheeler sales by FY26 in the base case scenario. It also expects that 43% of annual passenger three-wheeler sales to be of the electric variant by FY26. According to Tata Power, 9.6 to 14.3 million electric vehicles are expected to be on road by FY26. India is among a handful of countries that support the global [email protected] campaign, which targets to have at least 30% new vehicle sales be electric by 2030. NITI Aayog believes that a successful implementation of the FAME scheme could increase EV sales penetration, which is a necessary component to achieve the COP26 targets.