Kenya Unveils Draft National E-Mobility Policy to Foster Electric Vehicle Adoption


In a bid to combat climate change and reduce dependence on fossil fuels, the Kenyan government has unveiled its draft national e-mobility policy, signaling a pivotal shift towards electric vehicles (EVs), motorcycles, and bicycles. The initiative, announced during a public participation forum at the Garissa government guest house, aims to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, aligning with the objectives of the Paris Agreement 2015.

Michael Muchiri, a member of the Electric Mobility taskforce, highlighted the policy’s objectives, emphasizing the promotion of local manufacturing and assembly of EVs, alongside the development of e-mobility infrastructure and technical capacity.

Acknowledging current challenges such as limited range per charge and lengthy charging times, Muchiri reassured stakeholders of ongoing technological advancements. Notably, he mentioned the introduction of battery swap systems for motorcycles, eliminating the need for prolonged charging intervals.

Researchers are also diligently working to enhance EV capabilities, with plans to extend single charge distances from 200 to 500 kilometers. To incentivize adoption, the Ministry of Energy and the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) will introduce special tariffs, reducing charging costs for EV owners.

Addressing affordability concerns, Muchiri acknowledged the initial higher costs of EVs compared to traditional vehicles but expressed optimism that as technology evolves and production scales up, prices will decrease.

The Garissa County director for environment, Mulki Mohamed, lauded the draft recommendations and urged the government to leverage the Garissa solar power plant—the largest in East and Central Africa—to power local charging stations. She stressed the importance of road infrastructure development to facilitate seamless EV movement.

Maxwell Otieno, Chairperson of the Garissa County boda boda association, expressed readiness to embrace electric motorcycles once charging stations are operational, citing potential cost savings.

With approximately 4000 electric mobility vehicles already in the country, the proposed policy aims to accelerate EV uptake and foster a sustainable, eco-friendly transportation ecosystem nationwide. As Kenya strides towards a greener future, stakeholders remain hopeful that these initiatives will pave the way for a cleaner, more efficient transportation landscape.

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