SMMT calls for charging regulator

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), a trade association for the UK’s automotive industry, has called for a new regulator to be established to oversee charging networks for electric vehicles (EVs) in the country.

The new body is suggested to take the name “Office for Charging”, or “Ofcharge” for short, and it would have the power to ensure that minimum standards are met and to regulate pricing levels. The SMMT has also published a seven-point plan to achieve set infrastructure targets by encouraging cooperation between private firms and the UK government.

The SMMT believes that the EV charging infrastructure should be developed ahead of when the demand actually manifests, and that there should be established goals for nationwide charging provision. It also believes consumers should be able to expect minimum standards, such as close to 100% reliability, contactless payment and transparent pricing. In addition, by futureproofing the charging infrastructure, the SMMT claims it will reduce the risks of private sector investment in it.

In a statement, the SMMT’s Chief Executive, Mike Hawes, said:

“The automotive industry is up for the challenge of a zero-emission new car and van market by 2035. Delivering this ambition—an ambition that would put the UK ahead of every major market in the world—needs more than automotive investment.”

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