The National Franchised Dealers Association Northern Ireland division (NFDA NI) has written a letter supporting the ESB Energy Levelling Up Fund application to upgrade and enhance electric charging infrastructure in Northern Ireland.
Announced at the Spending Review, the Levelling Up Fund will invest in infrastructure that improves everyday life across the UK. The £4.8 billion fund will support town centre and high street regeneration, local transport projects, and cultural and heritage assets.
With the UK set to ban the sale of new internal combustion engine (ICE) models from 2030, there is a growing mobility divide in the UK. Rural communities are at risk of being left behind when it comes to the roll out of electric charging infrastructure. Northern Ireland has the highest rural population proportion in the UK at 37%.
Sue Robinson, NFDA NI Chief Executive comments, “In its current state, charging infrastructure in Northern Ireland falls far behind mainland Britain.
“Not only does Northern Ireland have the fewest number of public chargepoints per 100,000 people in the UK, but many are antiquated and unreliable. This hampers consumer confidence when it comes to purchasing electric vehicles.
“Northern Ireland urgently requires investment in this area, and we would support ESB’s application to the Levelling Up Fund”.