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Hyundai top executive expected to visit Zimbabwe

by Staff reporter
20 Sep 2022 at 06:01hrs | Views
Zimbabwe's plans to entrench the use of electric vehicles will get a major boost this week when Hyundai Motor Group chief executive Mr Song Ho-sung pays a visit to explore investment opportunities, while marketing South Korea's bid to host the World Expo 2030 in Bushan.

As part of the battle against global warming and climate change there is general agreement that the world needs to switch from internal combustion engines to electric vehicles.

Even using coal and other fossil fuels to generate the extra electricity, there would be a significant drop in carbon emissions, with electric motors more than twice as efficient as the best petrol and diesel engines and power stations also highly efficient.

With growing renewable energy sources, the carbon emissions would be reduced even more.

Besides investigating how Zimbabwe and the rest of Africa can in practical terms set up the charging networks and start manufacturing and assembling electric vehicles, Mr Song will be a special envoy for South Korea's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and will meet high ranking government officials during his mission.

According to The Korea Times, he will seek future cooperation between Zimbabwe and Hyundai Motor Group and exchange opinions on the supply and charging of electric vehicles in Africa, with his mission including selling the bid to host World Expo 2030.

Mr Song's visit comes as the Government is working with local private companies in setting up electric vehicle (EV) production plants in Zimbabwe, as provided in the National Development Strategy (NDS 1), which is expected to propel the country towards Vision 2030 for the attainment of an upper middle income economy.

Director Energy Conservation and Renewable Energy in the Ministry of Energy and Power Development Dr Sosten Ziuku recently revealed that the ministry had since submitted a policy framework and road map for Zimbabwe e-Mobility to the Government for evaluation.

The policy document seeks, among other issues, to address the transport challenges in the country, including sustainable development goals (SDGs), which will reduce the negative impacts of climate change and ensure sustainable development.

Private sector companies are already working closely with the Government and line ministries in setting up e-vehicle plants in Harare and this is expected to create significant employment.

Already, three EVs assembly plants have been established in Harare by Build Your Dreams Zimbabwe (BYD), ZimTorque and Brad-Tech, with electric vehicles anticipated to significantly reduce the country's fuel import bill in the long run.

There are also calls to increase awareness of electric vehicles and make them more available since they are generally cheaper to run and they sharply reduce carbon emissions which have caused climate change, even if they use carbon-generated electricity.

Mr Song left South Korea on Sunday on the journey that will also take him to South Africa and Mozambique for six days up to Friday.

He is the first businessman to be dispatched overseas as the Minister of Foreign Affairs' special envoy for Busan's bid to host World Expo 2030.

Africa has 45 member countries of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), which is the second largest following Europe with 48 members.

"Africa has the second largest number of members of the international organisation on the Expo after Europe, so this visit is very meaningful," a Hyundai Motor Group official was quoted as saying.

Mr Song will visit Johannesburg and Pretoria, the administrative capital of South Africa, Maputo in Mozambique and Harare where he will meet high-ranking government officials and key figures in government ministries.

At those meetings, he will explain Busan's competitiveness and future vision for hosting the World Expo 2030 and seek support for the southern port city's bid.

According to reports, Mr Song will emphasise that Korea is the best country to support the growth of African countries by sharing the case of the country's transition from an economic aid recipient to a donor nation.

Hyundai Motor Group has been operating "Green Light Project," a social contribution project in Africa since 2012, and there will be discussions on the possibility of various social contribution projects in the future.

Source - The Herald