Nissan and Bhutan partner for national EV strategy
THIMPHU, Bhutan (February, 2014) – Nissan has pledged its support for the Kingdom of Bhutan’s transition to an electric vehicle fleet. Nissan has entered into an agreement with the Royal Government of Bhutan with the shared goal of achieving the nation’s eco-friendly vision for the future.
The agreement follows talks between the Prime Minister of Bhutan Tshering Tobgay and Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn in Thimphu last year. Mr. Ghosn returned to the capital of Bhutan today to make the announcement alongside the Prime Minister.
“The Royal Government of Bhutan is pleased to launch this partnership with Nissan as we work to achieve our vision of a leading global EV nation,” said Tshering Tobgay, Bhutan’s prime minister. “Nissan’s global experience will be invaluable as we make progress towards an electrified national transport infrastructure.”
“As the world’s leader in zero emissions and the maker of the best-selling electric vehicle, the Nissan LEAF, we believe in and will support Bhutan’s breakthrough vision of its future transportation,” said Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn. “We will also use the opportunity of supplying the Nissan LEAF and our quick chargers to Bhutan to demonstrate how our electric vehicle business can be scaled in emerging markets that are rich in clean-energy.”
Bhutan’s government is targeting EVs as a key strategy to achieve its goal of becoming a zero emissions nation. It envisages Thimphu as a “clean-electric” city in which transportation for its more than 100,000 citizens is powered by clean energy. Bhutan generates sufficient hydro-electricity that clean energy is the country’s major export, but it must import fossil fuels to run its current vehicle fleet. Bhutan is seeking to reduce its oil imports significantly.
As a first step in the cooperation Nissan will deliver Nissan LEAFs for use in the government fleet, and as taxis, as well as demonstration units for the national rollout of EVs. Quick chargers will also be supplied to implement the government’s plan for infrastructure covering the entire Himalayan nation. Feasibility studies for further technical cooperation are included in the details of the agreements.
The Royal Government of Bhutan will study implementation of an exemption from the green tax, sales tax and custom duty for EVs as well as a carbon credit scheme where the sale of EVs will earn credits that can be traded for tax exemptions for imported internal combustion engine-powered (ICE) vehicles.
Ghosn will present two Nissan LEAFs to the Kingdom of Bhutan, coinciding with the birthday of His Majesty the King on February 21, as a symbol of the strong partnership between Nissan and Bhutan and their shared vision of the future.
The Nissan LEAF, the world’s first mass-produced zero emissions vehicle, is the best-selling EV in history with a 45% global market share of electric vehicles. In 2014, Nissan will market an all-electric light commercial vehicle, the e-NV200, in Europe and Japan. Nissan is committed to ongoing innovation in electric vehicles and is determined to maintain its leadership position in the market and bring the benefits of zero-emissions mobility to progressively more people around the world.