Latvia has little hope for widespread purchase of electric vehicles

There are currently few public opportunities to support a massive transition from fossil fuel vehicles to electric cars, so hope rests with the private sector, Transport Ministry (SM) told Latvian Radio October 19.

The European Green Deal aims to reduce transport emissions by 90% by 2050. In this context, Latvia is expected to move towards less polluting modes of transport over the next seven years.

Rapid transition from the use of fossil fuels to more environmentally friendly means of transport cannot be achieved easily, as the possibility of state aid for the purchase of electric vehicles is severely limited in the coming years.

Therefore hope is being placed on the idea of commercial banks providing tempting offers to purchase electric vehicles, said Ligita Austrupe, Deputy State Secretary of Ministry of Transport.

"Support opportunities for the purchase of electric vehicles and the replacement of fossil fuel vehicles are more within the competence of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development. On our part, we are very scrupulous and carefully following to influence the progress of these issues.

Yes, I agree that there is a need for incentives for individuals to change their car to a more environmentally friendly one, but, as I have said, unfortunately, we have to consider extremely limited funds.

We therefore expect support from the private sector, including Altum [state devlopment bank] and commercial banks, who are actually already prepared to help and offer their service, their product to the population," Austrupe said.

It is also planned to update roadworthiness maintenance checks by improving measurement technologies of harmful emissions, the Ministry spokeswoman added.

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