Belgium only has 2 charging points every 100 km
According to ACEA, the European federation of car manufacturers, Belgium only has two charging stations for electric vehicles every 100 km. In The Netherlands, there are 28.
In the last few years, the infrastructure for electric vehicles has improved significantly. According to ACEA, the number of charging points – based on alternating current – in the European Union has quadrupled since 2014. Last year, the entire EU had 144.000 of those points. Still, there’s work to be done. According to an estimation of the EU, there should be 2,8 million charging points by 2030.
Most of the actual charging stations are situated in the West and North of the EU. A remarkable fact is that 76% are to be found in four countries: in The Netherlands, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom. The Dutch are forerunners; they alone have 26% of them. The results for several Southern and Eastern European countries are poor. Greece, for instance, hardly had 5o charging points by the end of last year.
By the end of last year, Belgium had 3.038 public charging stations or an average of hardly two for every 100-km stretch. The first of 200 planned public charging stations in Brussels – situated at the Eeuwfeestlaan, next to the Atomium – was officially inaugurated in October 2018.
According to the figures of ACEA, the presence of charging infrastructure is essential for the development of the electric car. In countries with fewer than one charging point for 100 km, the market share of the electric car is smaller than 1%.
Charging at home
In 2016, the then Minister of Energy, Bart Tommelein (Open Vld), introduced a plan to provide 5.000 charging points by 2020. Apart from that, there are also numerous private charging points, in parking lots, for instance.
Europe says there should be at least one charging point for every ten electric vehicles. In the meantime, Belgium has one for every 3,4 cars, which is quite enough because most electric drivers charge their car at home or on the job.
The development of the network of fast chargers, though, based on direct current, does not go that smoothly. The installation of a fast-charging point in The Netherlands takes about four months. “In Flanders, it takes one and a half or even up to three years, which is unacceptable,” says Arthur Vijghen, CEO of The New Drive, a consulting agency for sustainable mobility. “Flanders needs a coordinating approach.”