The electric vehicle (EV) industry has come a long way. In the 1990s, the first mass-produced electric car, General Motors’ EV1, met a miserable fate: The model was deemed unprofitable, and the EV1 program was cancelled, with the automotive giant pulling the vehicles off the market.
Today, however, the interest in electric-powered vehicles has been growing, what with increasing consciousness about climate change and need to address environmental pollution. The releases of modern EVs such as the Tesla Model S and Nissan Leaf have fueled the trend since the 2010s, with EVs looking to play a more and more significant part in shaping future modes of transportation. Many countries are now getting on the bandwagon of vehicle electrification.
One country that has committed to introducing the widespread use of EVs is Indonesia. The promotion of EVs in the most populous country in Southeast Asia is related to its goal of achieving a net-zero carbon emissions by 2060, as outlined in a national plan set out as its contribution to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change under the 2015 Paris Agreement. At the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow last year, Indonesia committed to cutting emissions by 29 percent on its own – by 41 percent with international assistance – by 2030.
In line with this effort, the Indonesian government has set a target of betting two million EV units on the road by 2025. EVs are, therefore, expected to drive a huge shift in transportation modes in the country. President Joko Widodo, popularly known as Jokowi, has proposed that EVs should become the main form of transportation in Indonesia, establishing a foundation for the development and utilization of environmentally friendly transportation in the future.
Indonesia is home to the world’s largest mineral reserves, including nickel, a raw material that is in growing demand for the production of lithium EV batteries. In addition to making serious efforts in developing EVs, Widodo also plans to work with the private sector. One key potential partner is Tesla’s Elon Musk – Widodo hopes to involve the renowned businessman in the country’s plan to establish a world-class electric battery industry by tapping into its vast nickel reserves.