Public sector oil marketing company Bharat Petroleum on Wednesday said it will invest around Rs 200 crore this fiscal to set up 100 fast electric vehicles charging corridors having 2,000 stations along the busiest 100 national highways.
The company has recently opened its first EV charging corridor along the Chennai-Trichi-Madurai highway with one charging unit. The second corridor will come up on the Kochi-Salem section of the National Highway 47 within the next two months, BPCL executive director for retail B S Ravi told PTI on Wednesday.
Ravi said in case a charging unit does not need a booster transformer, such a unit which will be a full-fledged centre offering rest rooms, refreshments/food court, among other amenities can be ready at a cost varying from Rs 7-12 lakh, and if the unit needs a transformer then the cost will go up to Rs 25 lakh.
“Given this cost variance, we have budgeted for around Rs 200 crore investment this fiscal as we plan to set up as many as 2,000 fast charging stations across 100 corridors by March 2023,” Ravi said.
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He said for the long-term, the company has plans to have 7,000 fast EV charging stations by FY25. But he did not disclose the investment details.
He said the third corridor will most probably be the Mumbai-Bengaluru National Highway 4, and will have multiple units as the highway has amongst the highest traffic.
Ravi said the national oil refiner and marketer, which is the second largest player with close to 30 per cent retail market in petrol and diesel, hopes that the EV ecosystem will grow faster than forecast earlier, and the company wants to play a big role in setting up the basic infrastructure for this ambitious drive.
The government has also announced sops to push domestic manufacturing and sales of electric vehicles.
Ravi said his company will also seek some incentives from the Centre or the state government as the charging stations will not be commercially viable due to low footfalls in the initial stage.
Last week, auto dealers’ body FADA had said that electric vehicle retail sales zoomed over three-fold in FY22 to 4,29,217 units from 1,34,821 units in fiscal 2021 and from 1,68,300 units in FY20. Electric two-wheelers especially scooters contributed to a majority of the EV sales. PTI
Image : EVgo | Source : PTI