BUJUMBURA July 7th (ABP) – As part of the preparation for the “Support Project for the Electricity Transition in Burundi” initiated by the government of Burundi in partnership with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) on financing of the Global Environment Fund (GEF), the Ministry of Trade, Transport, Industry and Tourism in collaboration with the Enviro-Protec Association organized on Thursday, July 6 in Bujumbura, a workshop to raise awareness of senior State executives and development partners on the advantages of “Electric Mobility in Burundi” .
In her speech, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Trade, Transport, Industry and Tourism, Mrs. Faïda Catherine, who represented the Minister at the workshop, recalled that at a time when the electricity sectors and transport are experiencing technological advances in Burundi, the transition to electric mobility offers endless possibilities: two- or three-wheeled motorcycles, cars, buses, trains could now no longer run on gasoline or diesel but on electricity. This would avoid the emission of billions of tons of greenhouse gases, as well as the millions of deaths or pathological complications due to air pollution, on the one hand, but would also avoid long queues in front of gas stations. She did not fail to point out that regarding climate challenges, electric mobility is an essential solution for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and thus achieving carbon neutrality by 2025 in accordance with the Paris Agreement and Burundi’s commitments to climate change. States around the world, including Burundi, are mobilizing to encourage other non-polluting modes of transport, in particular the non-motorized mode of transport, that is, walking and cycling, and this mobilization is part of the results of the recent meetings of the national forum on the development of Burundi, namely the project “Vision Burundi, Emerging Country in 2040 and Developed Country in 2060”.
The permanent secretary at the ministry responsible for transport said that the support project for the transition to electric mobility in Burundi has the overall objective of “reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from road transport and facilitate the transition to sustainable urban passenger mobility in Burundi with a focus on the electrification of transport”.
This will allow the Government of Burundi to develop and put in place an institutional framework and adopt a strategy for the promotion of low carbon electric mobility, adopt regulations, technical standards, tax policies, approve financing plans to accelerate the introduction of electric vehicles in Burundi.
The project to support the transition to electric mobility in Burundi will promote the establishment of regulations for the management of electric vehicles and batteries, to approve recommendations on the integration of renewable energies to support long-term environmental sustainability of electric mobility in Burundi. She also added that both public and private transport companies for the introduction of electric vehicles will be supported, and charging stations for electric vehicles along road transport infrastructure will be installed.
The meeting participants raised the concern of that transition from the use of thermal engine vehicles to thermal vehicles which they consider very expensive compared to the means of most of the people of Burundi. Another concern relates to the electricity which is not in sufficient quantity for Burundi.
For all those concerns, the Director General of Transport at the Ministry of Trade, Transport, Industry and Tourism, Mr. Innocent Nibizi, said that the project is new, and that a legal framework taking into account all those concerns is being drawn up to facilitate the implementation of that project. He then added that such projects already exist in the region and that in order to prevent Burundi from being the market for the disposal of thermal engine vehicles from other countries, Burundi must move forward with the pace of other countries. He also specified that the industries in the countries that manufacture the vehicles have begun to prepare to manufacture more electric vehicles than vehicles with internal combustion engines.