An overview of the latest NFDA Northern Ireland’s manifesto ahead of the Assembly Election taking place on 5 May is included in the latest NFDA NI’s update alongside Government announcements and recent news.

Outlining franchised dealers’ priorities, NFDA NI’s manifesto focuses on three key areas.

  • Increasing investment into combatting the lacking existing Northern Ireland EV infrastructure network

NFDA NI highlighted that, in its current state, Northern Ireland has the lowest number of charging devices out of the all the devolved nations, with over 50% less than the UK and GB average. Although the NFDA and the sector in Northern Ireland welcomed ESB’s announcement in November 2021 that it had received £3.27m from the first round of the Levelling Up Fund, this must be the start of further investment into the NI charging network.

  • A ‘Green Investment Allowance’ to support private capital expenditure on electric chargepoints

The burden is currently on franchised dealers to invest further significant amounts of capital in the necessary energy infrastructure required for the projected adoption of electric vehicles. In light of the rapid acceleration of the transition to zero-emission vehicles, an EV Infrastructure Investment Allowance would provide a clear incentive for retailers to bring forward their chargepoint plans, boosting the number of chargepoints in car retail areas and familiarising motorists with the technology when shopping for their next electric/hybrid vehicle.

  • Seeking a solution to the supply side issues surrounding the current NI Mot Testing Regime

NFDA NI remains deeply concerned about the current MOT testing regime in Northern Ireland. The significant testing backlog still remains within the system. We urged the Assembly to consider how NFDA NI members could complement and support DVA’s work around MOT testing, through the utilisation of the dealer network which could provide investment and personnel. NFDA NI is encouraged by the positive response received so far, and we look forward to further collaboration on the issue.

To read more about the manifesto as well as Northern Ireland and automotive news, as well as a roundup of the latest Government announcements affecting dealers, download the latest NFDA NI update here.