Govt pledges 100% electric public transport by end of decade

Govt pledges 100% electric public transport by end of decade

The Transport Ministry will make its entire fleet of public transport vehicles 100% electric, starting with the limousine service of the Airports of Thailand (AoT), said Minister Suriya Jungrungreangkit on Sunday.

The pledge was made during Mr Suriya's visit to the 40th Motor Expo at Impact Challenger Hall in Muang Thong Thani.

The exhibition included displays by many EV operators of all vehicle types with reservations and sales rates reported to be increasing during the expo.

The exhibition, said Mr Suriya, showed the success of government efforts to promote EV usage, which he believes can grow by a further 30% nationwide by 2030.

The policy was set mainly to help tackle air pollution problems and focused on clean air provision as a basic human right.

Mr Suriya said the ministry had told all divisions to replace old vehicles as their rental contracts expire with EVs.

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin had given the order earlier in October, he added.

His team is already working with the Finance Ministry to speed up the process of installing EVs on all routes, he added.

Limousines used in AoT's airports will pilot the policy, as replacing the luxury vehicles with EVs was included earlier in AoT's management plans, said Mr Suriya.

Earlier on Saturday, Mr Suriya led the monthly meeting of the policy committee designated to propel the plan from the paper stage to purchase.

At least 72 new schemes will be introduced during 2023–2027, to improve every mode of transport, he said.

According to Mr Suriya, those projects on land transport included not only the EV replacement but also the construction of three motorways, which will open by 2031.

Regarding the other plans, 13 are focused on local transport in the special economic zones. One concerns improvement work to be undertaken at Krabi and Phuket airports and the second is a similar upgrade to Chiang Mai Airport.

There are 22 new national railway services in the pipeline including 167km of dual rail tracks spanning from Khon Kaen to Nong Khai, the Orange Line MRT connecting Bang Khun Non and Min Buri and extensions of the Red Line's electric trains.

The Ministry will also transform several piers on the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok into smart piers and develop cruise terminals to support marine tourism, he said.

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