2 Feb 21

Governments gear up for EV transition in Latin America

When it comes to evaluating the feasibility of electrifying your fleet, regional fleet managers must first be up to par on what is going on in each country throughout their coverage area.

One influential factor of the trends seen throughout any region when it comes to the evolution towards electric vehicles (EV) is government incentives. With that said, here is a bit about what is going on throughout Latin America.

The most common EV pushing incentive in the region is the exemption or reduction of vehicle import taxes. While Panama is working toward full implementation, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay, the Dominican Republic, and Uruguay have already mandated these breaks on EVs.
Meanwhile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, and Paraguay have tax breaks on purchases, while Peru, the Dominican Republic and Uruguay have partially implemented this strategy, according to business development expert Pedro Giraldo, speaking at the latest Fleet Latam Business Networking Group (BNG) meeting entitled “The key role of telematics for EV transition”.

Among the incentives lacking to a greater extent in the region are those related to the use and circulation of vehicles. Ownership and circulation tax breaks are only available in Costa Rica and Uruguay and those working its way toward this are Brazil, Mexico and the Dominican Republic.

electric-powered taxi in Mexico City (source: Shutterstock)

Regarding lower fees at tollbooths, parking facilities, and related services, only Colombia, Costa Rica, and Ecuador have implemented this with Brazil, Mexico and Peru underway, said Mr. Giraldo who is business development manager (Latam government) for international telematics company Geotab.

Finally, when it comes to countries with a national strategy on electric mobility, those which have put one into action are Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, and Panama. Meanwhile, national electrification policies in Argentina, Mexico, Paraguay, the Dominican Republic and Uruguay are in the works.

National plans, in the numbers

  • Chile: 100% of public transport and 40% of private transport should be electrified by 2050.
  • Colombia: 600,000 EVs seen on streets by 2030.
  • Costa Rica: 25% of light vehicles should be zero-emission by 2035 and 60% by 2050 (commercial and government fleets seen with higher percentages). Meanwhile, 70% of buses and taxis are expected to be zero-emission by 2035 and 100% by 2050.
  • Mexico: 500 trolleybuses for zero-emission EV routes are expected in Mexico City by 2024.
  • Panama: 25-50% of public transport and 10-20% of private transport should be electrified by 2030. Lastly, EVs are seen representing 25-40% of total private vehicles sales in the country by 2030.

As for fleet managers, besides being up to par with the most recent electrification initiatives underway at federal, state, and municipal levels, make sure you are keen on what’s going on when it comes to recharging infrastructure available, the comparative price of fuel and electricity, and other influential factors.  

For more on these and other topics related to the fleet and mobility scene throughout Latin America and the world, visit Global Fleet's Wikifleet pages, which features detailed profiles on 50 countries.  

Authored by: Daniel Bland