Saudi Arabian e-mobility solutions provider Electromin said on Tuesday it will set up 100 electric vehicle charging points across the kingdom, boosting the country's green transport credentials.
The company's charging network will be compatible with AC home and office chargers, DC fast chargers and DC ultra-fast chargers, catering to all customer segments, it said in a statement. The network will be available to the public by next month.
“The rollout of EV charging points across the kingdom is our first phase of a significant national strategy that extends to 2030 and beyond,” Tony Mazzone, Electromin’s director of energy and EV infrastructure, said.
“[It is] in line with the national priorities and commitments of achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2060 and 30 per cent of vehicles in Riyadh being electric by 2030.”
Saudi Arabia's electric vehicle market is growing as more motorists adopt sustainable modes of transport, driving the kingdom to a top-50 spot for the first time in the latest industry index released by AlixPartners.
The Arab world's biggest economy moved up to 49th place in the New York-based consultancy's Automotive Electrification Index for the fourth quarter of 2021, showing the growing awareness of consumers of the benefits of going electric.
Last month, Lucid Motors, the EV maker backed by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund, signed an agreement with the kingdom's government for the sale of 100,000 cars that will support Riyadh's sustainability drive.
Electromin is wholly owned by Petromin, a Jeddah-based lubricants and automotive services company.
Its EV charging points will be powered by a mobile application. The app will show all charging locations within the selected Petromin Express and Petromin AutoCare outlets.
It will allow customers to locate the nearest public charger, plan their route, check the status of the charger to ensure it is available and allow them to fully control the start and finish of their charging session. The app will also allow payments and bookings.
EV sales in the kingdom are expected to pick up, with studies predicting that nearly 1.3 million units will be sold in the next eight years, said Mr Mazzone adding that Electromin will offer full life cycle support in the EV aftermarket ecosystem.
“Building on our national network of charging stations will mean less pollution, more employment opportunities, and cleaner cars to deliver on the kingdom’s clean energy investments.”
The chargers installed in the first phase will be compatible with all homologated vehicles approved by The Saudi Standards, Metrology and Quality Organisation (Saso) — a government body that co-ordinates standardisation activities using AC type two connectors. The second phase will include additional AC chargers and DC chargers up to 360kW, effectively allowing users to add up to 100-kilometre of range in four minutes.
“Electromin is the first in Saudi Arabia to offer a public charging solution using Saso regulated chargers, with full approval by municipalities, enabling drivers to make the switch to EVs knowing that there is a complete network for them to rely on,” commercial director of Electromin Graham Tunks said.
Electromin said it will also introduce new features and upgrades to its app to align with the expansion of the network.
Customers can download the app through Google Play or Apple Store and register their payment card details. A dedicated call centre will also help EV users with charging and technical issues.
The company will also provide a mobile EV recovery service to address the on-road issues like instances when an EV battery runs out.
Through the service, they can contact Electromin who will then send out a recovery vehicle that can charge their battery enough to get them to the closest charging point. The recovery service will be initially limited to Riyadh, Jeddah, and Dammam.