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Search for £400M electric car fund manager finally begins

electric car infrastructure 3 to 2

Government has finally started the search for an investment manager for a £400M electric car infrastructure fund, some eight months after the policy was first announced. 

Bidding has opened for the management of the Charging Infrastructure Investment Fund that is focused on charging infrastructure in public destinations, strategic roads and in urban areas, following the announcement in the Autumn Budget last year. 

Funding will be eligible for charge points, the software and platforms required to run charging infrastructure, grid connections to the national and local networks and any related grid reinforcements, and required battery storage solutions. 

Treasury exchequer secretary Robert Jenrick said: “We want the UK to be a world leader when it comes to the number of electric cars on our roads.

“Uptake is increasing and we want the opportunity to own an electric vehicle to be available to all. But crucial to encouraging the take-up of these cars across the country is increasing people’s access to charging points.

“We want to scale up at pace and ensure interoperability for ease of use.”

He added: “This fund is a vital step in our mission to change the way we travel, create new jobs and protect our environment for future generations.

“This builds on our ambitions set out in the Road to Zero to encourage new homes to be built with charging-points.”

Chancellor Phillip Hammond announced financial support for charging points for the zero emissions vehicles in last year’s autumn budget, with £200M to come from public money matched by the same amount in private investment. 

Government was slammed for the delay in appointing a private sector fund manager after it was revealed it had failed to get funding months after the announcement was made.

Shadow transport secretary Andy McDonald said at the time: “The government’s electric cars policy has run out of power before it’s even left the driveway.”

A manager will be appointed by autumn and the fund will be in a position to begin investing early next year.

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Readers' comments (1)

  • As a new electric car driver, I’d say the major problem is a scattergun approach to rapid chargers. We need a proper network of charging hubs similar to Tesla’s Superchargers rather than hundreds of chargers scattered in ones and twos. And they need to be reliable and cater for the newer cars with CCS charging.

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