Department considers EV battery subsidy Government wants lower car prices

department considers ev battery subsidy  government wants lower car prices

An EV receives a charge at a PTT petrol station. The government wants EVs to account for 30% of anticipated vehicle production in 2030.

The Excise Department is mulling a subsidy to support the production of electric vehicle (EV) batteries, aiming to reduce the price of EVs, says director-general Ekniti Nitithanprapas.

He said the price of the battery accounts for around 50% of an EV’s total price. The subsidy is meant to make EV prices more competitive with fossil fuel-powered vehicles.

The department’s consideration of a battery subsidy follows the government’s recent launch of tax and subsidy measures to support EV usage. It has yet to finalise a subsidy amount for the battery scheme, Mr Ekniti said.

The department is contemplating many options for the measure, including providing a subsidy for the entire production process, starting from the use of raw materials to the end-production process, he said. Another option is to subsidise the price of the whole battery.

Mr Ekniti said a subsidy is in line with the government’s recent focus on clean energy. These batteries can also be used in other industries.

In addition, the department is considering a measure to handle EV battery waste in the future, he said.

The government wants EVs to account for 30% or 600,000-700,000 units of total anticipated vehicle production by 2030.

This means a large number of EV batteries will be in use and when discarded, these batteries could affect the environment, said Mr Ekniti.

The government’s recent tax subsidy for battery electric vehicles (BEVs) covers passenger cars with no more than 10 seats and a maximum recommended retail price of 2 million baht.

BEVs with a battery capacity of 10-30 kilowatt-hours (kWh) receive a subsidy of 70,000 baht per unit.

BEVs with a battery capacity of 30kWh or higher receive a subsidy of 150,000 baht per unit.

The government also provides a subsidy of 150,000 baht for locally produced BEV pickups with a maximum recommended retail price of 2 million baht and a battery capacity of 30kWh or higher.

A BEV motorcycle with a maximum recommended retail price of 150,000 baht can receive a subsidy of 18,000 baht.

This BEV subsidy measure has registered 25,000 units.

A total of 10 BEV manufacturers have signed up for this 2.9-billion-baht subsidy scheme. Participants are required to sell discounted BEVs to consumers.

Last week Mr Ekniti said the department will begin offering this subsidy in the first quarter of next year, covering 500 units.