India calls for 'snap bid' to provide EV charging stations

posted by Su-San Sit
1 November 2017

To boost India’s ambitious plans to sell only electric vehicles (EV) by 2030 the government has called for a “snap bid” to provide 300 charging stations.

Saurabh Kumar, managing director at state-run firm Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL), said the government had announced the tender to make sure charging infrastructure was ready for the 500 electric sedans it recently procured from Tata Motors and Mahindra & Mahindra.

“Snap bid for EV chargers initiated for faster launch of charging stations for first EV batch expected by mid-November,” he said.

He said the snap bid would require suppliers to provide 300 EV charging stations by 20 November. 

So far, 14 companies, including ABB, Siemens, Bharat Heavy Electrical and Delta Power Solution India, have submitted bids on EV charging stations.

Kumar added that only providers who have Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras-certified charging technology could take part in the tender.

“The technical qualification was that they will have to get their chargers tested at IIT Madras and only when the testing is compete, the price bid will be open,” he said.  

Earlier this year, EESL floated a tender to obtain 10,000 EVs and 4,000 charging stations for the coal, mines, power and renewable energy ministries in Delhi. 

It said it also planned to rent cars out to other departments of the government, with the first phase due by next month.

The government is pushing for infrastructure to support the budding EV business in the country, primarily for environmental reasons and its commitment to the Paris Agreement on reducing carbon emissions, according to the Economic Times.

Another important factor is India’s need to lessen dependence on oil imports, which has been weighing heavily on its economy. 

However, the lack of charging stations has been a significant roadblock for the EV industry in India.

Kumar said the cost of setting up a rapid-charging outlet is around 25 lakh (US$38,245), while slow charging stations will be around 1 lakh ($1,529). 

He added that at this price, building an extensive network of charging stations around Delhi would require an investment of more than 3,000 crore ($504.7m) over five years.

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