Budget 2021: $30m for Electric Vehicle-related initiatives

Nicholas Yong
·Assistant News Editor
·2 min read
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - DECEMBER 10, 2020: An electric car is charged at a Mosenergo charging station in Moscow. Sergei Karpukhin/TASS (Photo by Sergei Karpukhin\TASS via Getty Images)
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - DECEMBER 10, 2020: An electric car is charged at a Mosenergo charging station in Moscow. Sergei Karpukhin/TASS (Photo by Sergei Karpukhin\TASS via Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — Some $30 million will be set aside over the next five years for Electric Vehicle-related initiatives, as the government aims to deploy 60,000 charging points at public car parks and private premises by 2030.

The money will go towards measures such as improving electric vehicle charging provision at private premises, in order to catalyse partnership between the public and private sectors, said Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat on Tuesday (16 February) in his Budget 2021 statement in Parliament.

Calling EVs the "most promising clean-energy vehicle technology" today, he noted that the target of 60,000 charging points is more ambitious than the previous target of 28,000.

Delivering the Emerging Stronger Together Budget in Parliament, Heng told the House that the cost differential between EVs and internal combustion engine (ICE) cars will also be lowered.

This includes lowering the Additional Registration Fee floor to zero for EVs, from January 2022 to December 2023, to enable mass market electric car buyers to maximise the rebates from the EV Early Adoption Incentive. Further, road tax bands will be adjusted such that electric cars and ICE cars will have comparable road tax.

Boosting agri-food sector

To continue supporting technology adoption in the agri-food sector, the new $60 million Agri-Food Cluster Transformation Fund will replace the Agriculture Productivity Fund. This will be elaborated by Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Grace Fu at the Committee of Supply debate.

The measure is part of the government's drive to harness technology to address climate change, said Heng.

The Singapore Green Plan 2030 is an "ambitious long-term plan that builds on ongoing efforts, to secure a green, liveable, and sustainable home for generations of Singaporeans to come," noted Heng, with various government agencies working in concert.

For example, the Ministry of National Development is bringing more greenery to Singapore, while building up carbon sinks by extending nature throughout the island.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Transport is pressing on with efforts to become a car-lite society by improving public transport and encouraging active mobility, while discouraging pollutive vehicles. The Education Ministry is also strengthening education on sustainability practices among the young.

"This is a whole-of-society effort to meet a global challenge. But it is not without constraints and trade-offs," said Heng.

"We must continue to stay open and adaptive, and carefully balance our development objectives with sustainability considerations."

For more Budget 2021 updates: http://yhoo.it/37A35Rd

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