Inter-city transport service is about to get much better with the launch of Pakistan’s first Electric Vehicles (EVs) based service. Daewoo Express has announced its plans to launch 200 electric buses.
According to Business Recorder, the EVs will hit the Pakistani roads in the next couple of years along with 1000 EV rickshaws for Karachi and Lahore.
The General Manager at Daewoo Express, Sheriar Hassan, told the media outlet that along with cutting-edge transport technology for the commuters, it will also help in enhancing Air Quality Index (AQI) levels through the use of green technology.
Daewoo Express is looking towards an Asia-based development funding agency to secure multi-million dollar financing for the two projects by January-February 2024.
If things go as planned, we could see EV buses on the roads during the summer next year. However, Daewoo’s plan is to operate them on short routes with a maximum distance of 225 kilometers.
Operating on longer routes would mean the buses will have to stop for charging, causing inconvenience for the passengers. It has been decided that the buses will operate on 17 short routes, including Karachi to Hyderabad; Peshawar to Rawalpindi; Lahore to Faisalabad; Lahore to Sialkot etc.
Regarding the fares, the General Manager at Daewoo said that he can not comment on it with certainty as the electricity prices keep changing. He added that they will be installing charging stations at all of their terminals.
He added that no definitive decision has been taken regarding the manufacturer of the buses as they are in touch with three to four Chinese bus manufacturers. The company could consider entering into the electric bus manufacturing business if the EV buses project achieves the desired results.
Daewoo Express also plans to initiate its Electric rickshaws ride-hailing service in Karachi and Lahore and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed with Sazgar Engineering for the manufacturing of 1,000 such rickshaws.
A government source told the media outlet that the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), along with other financing agencies, could provide around $24 million for the project.
The Ministry of Climate Change (MoCC) has expressed its approval for the project as it will help in reducing pollution. However, the ministry has also recommended the company about using renewable sources of energy to charge its electric buses instead of conventional electricity.