Labor’s plan for Aussie EV sales: what we know

Great news for electric vehicle enthusiasts; Labor has announced an election policy for EVs to make up 50% of all new car sales by 2030. Most everyone following the Australian EV world has heard this, but many of us are still left with questions. We’ve collected the news on this exciting development to answer: What exactly are they promising, and what does it mean for Australia?

The announcement comes as part of Labor’s Climate Change Action Plan, their emissions reduction platform for the upcoming federal election. The dedicated policy page states:

“Labor will implement Australia’s first national electric vehicle policy, setting a national electric vehicle target of 50 per cent new car sales by 2030 and introducing vehicle emissions standards to reduce pollution and make the cost of driving a car cheaper for consumers.”

50% of total car sales by 2030 would translate to about 600,000 EVs per annum, up from figures in the low thousands today. Labor also revealed plans for 50% of government fleet vehicles to be EVs by 2025.

This figure has been called overly optimistic by some, but Labor’s new pollution regulations would likely push many dealerships to stock more EVs. The regulations will eventually require output of less than 105g CO2/km for light vehicles, which would bring us in line with the US.

Most vehicles sold in Australia today do not meet these standards, except EVs. So if carmakers don’t raise their game, they may be forced to sell more EVs purely to pick up the slack. Labor has confirmed that the regulations won’t come into effect until carmakers have had time to adjust

A PwC-commissioned report, released last year in collaboration with the Electric Vehicle Council, NRMA and the St Baker Energy Innovation Fund, predicted that a 57% EV uptake by 2030 would produce $2.9 billion real GDP growth for Australia, as well as 13,400 new jobs nationwide.

Reproduced from    Recharging the economy    — based on equivalent EV uptake to Norway

Reproduced from Recharging the economy — based on equivalent EV uptake to Norway

While this figure seems unlikely now, uptake remains highly dependent on the development and pricing of EVs over the next decade. Labor has promised to allow businesses to deduct an immediate 20% depreciation for  EVs valued over $20,000 in their fleets.

At a press conference in Canberra yesterday Bill Shorten also revealed his commitment to “a 200 million dollar infrastructure plan [...] to put a network of charging stations right around Australia on our national highways.”

Investment on this scale would play a large role in developing Australia’s highways for widespread EV use, and would compliment Chargefox’ ongoing project for a nationwide supercharger network.

Chargefox sign

The news comes just a week after the Coalition confirmed they won’t have an official EV policy until at least mid-2020. Their official climate platform promises a 26% emissions reduction by 2030 against Labor’s 45% commitment.

Transport currently accounts for approximately 20% of Australia’s total emissions, so an EV policy is integral to achieving Labor’s emission reduction goals.

Would you like to see EVs make up 50% of all car sales by 2030? Let us know what you think and check back regularly at for more EV news and industry updates.