Mobility Portal, Spain
Date: December 21, 2023
Inés Platini
By Inés Platini
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AER: “The Moves Plan does not sufficiently stimulate the demand for EVs in Spain”

The registrations of electric vehicles in the renting sector continue to grow significantly, according to José-Martín Castro Acebes, president of AER. However, he emphasizes the need for government bodies to continue incentivizing the market.
José-Martín Castro Acebes, president of AER.
José-Martín Castro Acebes, president of AER.

The fleet of renting vehicles continues to expand in Spain, reaching a total of 900,000 units, of which 10% are electrified vehicles.

According to José-Martín Castro Acebes, president of the Spanish Association of Vehicle Renting (AER), 2023 has been a very positive year, and it “will be the first channel to reach registrations recorded before the pandemic.”

Despite this, he tells Mobility Portal España that subsidies are crucial to continue incentivizing purchases, although “the Plan Moves does not sufficiently stimulate the demand for electric vehicles.”

This is partly due to the complexity buyers face in substantiating investments, as there is no specific disbursement date.

This creates a situation where many cannot rely on the subsidies because “they cannot risk not receiving payment until more than a year or even two later.”

Recently, the program managed by the Institute for Energy Diversification and Saving (IDAE) has been extended until July 31, 2024.

This decision aims to maintain continuous support for the electrification of transportation, covering the summer period, which traditionally experiences the annual peak in vehicle sales.

Not only that, but it also aims to incentivize the installation of charging points.

To do so, it allocates a budget of €1.2 billion, while the government still has approximately €290 million to address the remaining demand.

In addition to the time extension, changes have been made to the regulatory bases of the program to comply with modifications in European regulations.

However, these adjustments do not include the direct delivery of funds at the time of purchase.

They impose conditions on participating companies, such as limiting the annual budget allocated to each specific aid program to €150 million, among others.

In this context, Castro Acebes states, “The most concerning aspect is that there is no clear strategy involving public administrations and private electrification companies.”

And he maintains that so far, government entities have not made investments “to make Spain an example of how things should be done.”

This generates a lot of uncertainty among major buyers and limits the momentum that demand could exert.

As a result, a significant and severe obstacle to future growth occurs.

AER emphasizes the need to understand the citizens’ situation, ensuring that the implemented measures truly benefit them and do not become an impediment.

“If they do not favor the user, the management becomes complicated, generating a difficult situation,” he insists.

At the same time, the renting sector notes significant delays in vehicle deliveries due to the logistical crisis affecting manufacturers.

“Although it has improved a lot compared to what we observed before the summer, there is still considerable tension in the production chain,” says the president of AER.

Despite these challenges, the growth of the renting fleet does not stop, with registrations in the national territory already at approximately 27%.

This figure shows significant development in the sector over the last five years, with one in four registered vehicles being from renting.

AER: Expectations for 2024

Spain’s goal is to have 5.5 million electric cars on the road by 2030.

In line with this, the Spanish Association of Vehicle Renting anticipates a continuous increase in the number of electrified vehicles within the sector for the next year.

Castro Acebes predicts that registrations will continue to increase by over 30%, which is twice the rate of overall product growth.

“For 2023, we expect to continue growing strongly in the adoption of electrified vehicles and aim to consolidate the figures we have maintained to date,” he emphasizes.

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