Mobility Portal, Spain
Date: May 29, 2024
Barriers in Poland: eMobility sector calls for streamlining the issuance of certifications for the installation of public chargers
By Lucía Colaluce

Barriers in Poland: eMobility sector calls for streamlining the issuance of certifications for the installation of public chargers

Considering the Electromobility and Alternative Fuels Act (AFIR), the eMobility sector in Poland must obtain certification to install public chargers. What requirements must be met, and what is the sector's stance?
mobility in Poland

Today, Poland’s eMobility sector is constantly growing: It has more than 6,649 charging points.

Also, to date, the country has 51,485 electric vehicles (EVs), and 42,501 plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) in total, representing an 80.5 per cent increase from those reported in 2022.

Nonetheless, the industry faces its own challenges.

In conversation with Mobility Portal Europe, an eMobility sector actor offers its perspective on regulatory issues.

“They need to expedite the process for issuing UDT certifications as an essential requirement for installing public chargers. The process takes months of ongoing checks, and communication can be considered poorly done,” the spokesperson states.

Why does this process take so long?

To understand the situation surrounding the regulation of public charging devices, it is necessary to mention that on December 24, 2021, an amendment to the “Electromobility and Alternative Fuels Law” came into force.

In this law, stations and charging points, considered elements of the infrastructure for public road transport, are subject to technical tests carried out by the Technical Inspection Office (UDT) to ensure their safe operation, repair, and modernization.

The UDT is presented as an inspection body in Poland, responsible for safeguarding the safety of devices and technical installations in the eMobility sector.

Among its main responsibilities is assessing the compliance of devices with relevant regulations and specifications at all stages, from design to service.

A significant point is that the organization operates independently in financial terms and its technical activities.

On the other hand, as established in Article 15 of the legislation, the institution is responsible for supplying opinions on the conformity of the technical documentation of the stations designed with the technical requirements.

That is, it must issue certifications to guarantee the approval of the equipment, taking into account certain aspects to comply with.

First, it would ensure that at least one charging service provider operates at each public charging station and that these meet all technical and operational requirements established by Polish regulations.

This includes elements such as fire prevention, proper functioning of electrical networks, and accessibility for people with disabilities, which are essential for the eMobility sector.

Likewise, it would facilitate testing stations by the Technical Inspection Office to ensure their compliance with standards.

The entity would also commit to equipping hubs with software that allows the connection of electric and hybrid vehicles, as well as data transfer to the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Regulation (AFIR).

Each device installed at these stations must have a measuring system that records electricity consumption and transfers this data almost in real-time to the corresponding management system.

In addition to ensuring the necessary energy supply for the operation of the hubs, this institution would be responsible for coordinating agreements for the provision of charging and billing services, as well as compensating for electricity losses resulting from their operation.

Finally, it would provide clear information on the rules of use and operating instructions of the stations to the general public and facilitate access to charging service providers, by agreements established under market conditions.

It is worth noting that on April 13, 2024, the AFIR regulation came into force in the European Union, introducing a series of significant changes for the eMobility sector, including new provisions related to charging infrastructure for electric cars.

Among the numerous modifications, the amplification of the definition of alternative fuel infrastructure available to the public stands out, including points located in facilities accessible either on public or private land.

This inclusion extends to places with access restrictions or special conditions, such as public parking lots, supermarkets, hotels, or guesthouse parking lots, among other examples.

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