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Hamburg's economy banking on electric mobility

German government is investing EUR 9.65 million in use of e-cars in Hamburg's companies. Model project has yielded significant results

Hamburg leads other cities in Germany in terms of electric cars used by both companies and the municipal sector. Of 1,800 battery-run vehicles in Hamburg and the metropolitan region, more than 800 are in company vehicle fleets and 500 in communal bodies. The model project “Hamburg – Wirtschaft am Strom” ( Economy on Electricity), which received EUR 9.65 million from the German government, uses 775 electric vehicles every day. Companies have met for discussions in the Chamber of Commerce Hamburg.

Existing networks

More than 100 representatives of companies in Hamburg and public bodies met in the Chamber of Commerce Hamburg to draw an interim balance of their corporate efforts towards electric mobility. One participant, Olivier Gaudefroy, CEO of Renault Deutschland AG, said: “We find excellent preconditions in the Hanseatic city as politics and commerce prioritise the issue and use the existing networks effectively.” Renault works with diverse companies especially in the port industries in Hamburg.

Hamburg as an early market

The German government and the senate believe the knowledge gained in Hamburg offers key reference points for developing the demand for electric cars in local businesses and could be exemplary for managing the demand for low emission technology. “The achievements show impressively how successful and sensible the use of electric cars in companies and public bodies can be”, said Frank Horch, Senator for Economics.

Open issues

However, many questions remain unanswered despite the successful implementation in companies. Topics under discussion during the meeting included developing the existing, leasing business models. Certain user groups like taxi companies with very high mileage have to be shown alternatives. Last year’s legal amendments have to be applied more consistently at public charging stations. Many users are still complaining about conventional vehicles that are illegally blocking charging stations.

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