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Saudi Arabia Is On Track to Be A Major Player In the EV Industry

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Saudi Arabia is gearing up to be a leader in the electric vehicle industry. Companies like CEER and Lucid, owned by the Kingdom’s Public Investment Fund, are taking steps towards global expansion. CEER recently awarded a $1.3 billion contract for an EV manufacturing complex. Meanwhile, Lucid just opened an EV factory in Casa Grande, Arizona, which is said to have an initial capacity to produce 10,000 cars a year.

As the factory expands, this figure will jump to 300,000 vehicles annually. Although both companies have yet to match Tesla’s current production rate, estimated to be 375,000 units annually for the Tesla Model Y alone, industry experts believe that the demand for new cars from other EV producers could change the game in just a few years.  

Jim Deluca, CEO of CEER, recently addressed both companies’ progress in the EV market in Saudi Arabia. “All of us are pleased to be part of this transition, the transition of shaping the future of mobility in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” he said at a panel at the Public Investment Fund’s Private Sector Forum.

While the Kingdom is focusing on global expansion, the government is making it easier to adopt and drive EVs across the country. Here are all the reasons Saudi Arabia is on track to be a major player in the EV industry.

A Plan for More Charging Infrastructures Across the Country

Owning a top-of-the-line electric vehicle has multiple benefits. Besides having a decreased carbon footprint, you don’t need to worry about oil or filter changes. Moreover, you get to drive a vehicle with cutting-edge technology, such as collision avoidance, which can help keep you and your passengers safe.

Owning an EV can be challenging if you live in an area with few charging infrastructures. Fortunately, current and future EV owners in Saudi Arabia won’t have to deal with this problem as there are plans to add more charging infrastructures across the country.

Electromaps has a list of the country’s current charging stations. Today, there are over 2,800 charging points in corporate and residential places but only 104 public chargers in Riyadh, Jeddah, and along the Arabian Gulf. This number is about to get a massive boost, though, as the PIF and Saudi Electric Company have partnered to launch a company that will install EV charging infrastructures across the country.

The Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Company plans to install over 5,000 fast chargers in more than 1,000 locations in Saudi Arabia by 2030. This plan may help to boost EV adoption in Saudi Arabia, as well as its job market and economy.

Steady Move towards Sustainable Mobility

Although most of the country’s GDP comes from its oil earnings, Saudi Arabia has plans for long-term and sustainable development, as evidenced by its efforts to promote electric vehicle use. Today, more people are eager to drive EVs. In a new survey commissioned by General Motors, it was found that 93 percent of Saudi respondents have knowledge of all-electric vehicles, and two-thirds of car owners in Saudi Arabia and the UAE are strongly considering an electric car purchase in the future. 

Locals can expect to see more electric cars on the road in the coming years, as the government has committed to purchasing up to 100,000 vehicles from Lucid over the next 10 years. The delivery of the vehicles started last year, with orders ranging from 1,000 to 2,000 units annually. The orders will increase to 4,000 to 7,000 vehicles starting in 2025. 

Events to Promote Widespread Electric Vehicle Use

Saudi Arabia is already known for hosting global events and expositions, as it is an ideal destination for international events. One upcoming event is the 2030 World Expo, which will showcase different nations’ achievements and technological developments.

Meanwhile, the country has created an all-electric version of Formula E called the Diriyah E-Prix to promote the widespread use of electric vehicles. This event, the first Formula E race held in the country, was held in 2018. More events and promotional activities are expected to be created in line with the country’s bid to become an important player in the EV industry. 

Saudi Arabia is poised to become a leader in EV adoption and manufacturing. This signals a new era for the country as it heads towards a sustainable future. 

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