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Demand for electric bikes gaining momentum

The demand for electric motorbikes is increasing in Bangladesh for being an eco-friendly and cost-effective mode of transport.

In 2020, the Bangladesh Road Transport Authority issued a policy for registering electric vehicles.

The use of electric motorbikes has increased since then, with the biggest spike seen in 2022, ‍according to industry people.

The adoption of electric two-wheelers has ramped up as they are more environmentally friendly and cost-effective than those powered by fossil fuel, they said. Besides, advancements in the required components, such as quickly rechargeable batteries and lightweight motors, are also driving demand.

Just six or seven years ago, up to 10 electric motorbikes were sold each month compared to more than 50 units at present, said Iftakher Hossain, a system analyst of Akij Motors.Similarly, up to seven electric bikes that run on three wheels are now being sold each month compared to just three units previously.But the popularity of electric vehicles has not reached a high level in the country due to complications in access to charging facilities alongside hikes in the price of electricity.

“Still, the market has been growing for the past few years and so, it has a good prospect,” Hossain said.”Earlier, electric vehicles such as these were only sold in areas outside Dhaka, but a new dimension was added after issuance of the registration policy,” he added.With this backdrop, Komaki, an electric two-wheeler brand of India, announced on Friday that it has entered the local market by opening an outlet in Dhaka, as per a report by the Economic Times of India.Gunjan Malhotra, director of the electric division at Komaki, said the company received a good response in India and expects the same from other countries in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).This is because SAARC nations share similar geographical attributes and economic conditions that foster a pro-bike culture, she added.Malhotra also said that with a diverse product portfolio, Komaki is poised to serve an extensive customer base, driving the rapid adoption of electric vehicles in the SAARC region.”The company offers a wide range of electric two-wheelers, including nine low-speed models and eight high-speed ones,” ‍she added.According to a report published by Next Move Strategy Consulting, a US-based market intelligence provider, the global electric motorbike market generated $45.75 billion in 2021.The market is estimated to generate a total of $109.53 billion by 2030, posting annual growth of 10.21 per cent in the current decade, it said.Walton Digi-Tech Industries Ltd, a concern of Walton Group, launched the first locally made electric bike by the end of 2022, jumping on the bandwagon of a global shift towards eco-friendly transportation. Walton recently said it has the capacity to manufacture 2.5 lakh units of electric bikes each year.

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