By Nicole Kwok, Daisy Lee, Jianne Soriano

The number of EV in Hong Kong has seen a steady increase as well as its promotion in the city. EV now account for about 3 per cent of new vehicle registrations in Hong Kong, a higher percentage than many other developed automobile markets.

Hong Kong is also the first city in Asia to test new-generation EV after Japan and to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to test a new type of electric car, according to the Environment Bureau. The HKSAR government has set-up measures (including the installation of EV chargers, registration tax waiver) to promote the use of EV as well.

So how has the city’s EV trend been developed into now?

Electric Vehicles in Hong Kong

There are a total of 6860 EVs in road use, including both private and non private EVs. There is an increasing trend in number of newly-registered private EVs in Hong Kong, from 120 in 2011 to 2,607 in 2015.

Electric Vehicles in Hong Kong

However, among the non-private EVs, including bus, taxi, light bus, light goods vehicles, medium goods vehicles, and motorcycles, most of their registration has decreased in recent years, except for bus.

From pattern reflected in the above figures, the number of newly-registered EV in the past two years has indeed increased. However, compared to the increase of newly-registered motor vehicles (MV) in 2015, the number of newly-registered EV has only accounted 10% of the newly-registered MV. The actual growth of EV may not be as significant as it seemed.

Moving on to development of EV charging stations in Hong Kong. There are currently 1,466 charging stations in the city, distributed mostly in Hong Kong Island, followed by Kowloon, then the New Territories. All of them can be located in the following Google Map (Google Fusion Table).

https://fusiontables.google.com/embedviz?q=select+col1+from+1FJ8sFdLPaW5aCJy2pn8-d54viZojmIurPurXrQWh&viz=MAP&h=false&lat=22.359891689384526&lng=114.14508763740244&t=1&z=10&l=col1&y=3&tmplt=3&hml=ONE_COL_LAT_LNG

map

Below is packed bubbles diagram shows the number of standard, medium, and quick EV public chargers in all 18 districts when reader moves the cursor over each corresponding bubbles. The larger the bubble, the more chargers that district has, vice versa.

Electric Vehicles in Hong Kong

The scatter plots diagram below also shows the number of standard, medium, and quick EV public chargers in all 18 districts respectively. Each district is turned into a circle of different colour; all districts are scattered in three types of efficiency (standard, medium, and quick). Across horizontally of each type, the order of circles represents the number of chargers in that 18 districts, from least to most. Specific number of chargers will be shown when the cursor is moved to corresponding circles. Something interesting is going on with the relationship between the number and types of chargers in a district. Across vertically, i.e. to view the diagram as a whole, despite the top three districts with most chargers, there is an interesting pattern in which the more chargers a district has, doesn’t mean that district has the most number of quick chargers, vice versa. 

Electric Vehicles in Hong Kong

There is also specific number of public chargers installed in carparks that are run by the government, Hong Kong Housing Authority (HKHA), and Hong Kong Housing Society (HKHS) respectively. It is clearly seen that the government has provided the most number of the three types of chargers, followed by HKHA and HKHS. See below bar chart:

Electric Vehicles in Hong Kong

It seemed that the government and other private sectors are making a lot of effort in installing EV chargers. However, the number of newly-installed EV chargers in the city is actually decreasing since 2014, from 667 newly-installed EV chargers in 2014 to 56 in 2016.

Electric Vehicles in Hong Kong

This could imply that the government might see the supply of EV chargers as sufficient. If initial EV users are well-facilitated, the government should better consider working harder on the expansion of  the EV users. Japan and Denmark are good examples for the government to take into account, which they already invented slow-lane EV charging system and are constantly promoting EV usage with concrete policies and incentives. It is already said by a lot of articles that local government actions are not enough but they are most pivotal in turning Hong Kong into a greener and more innovative city. 

Actually, apart from popular EVs like Tesla and BMW i3, the government has also approved 58 EV models for public and private use. People can purchase these models from 21 vehicle retailers.

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Many technology and motor experts has estimated that the cost of EV is indeed relatively lower than driving MV in long term. The future of EV is full of possibilities which the government might have to try aggressively explore and to provide further incentives to keep up with their set goal on EV usage and popularity.

All Tableau diagrams can be viewed at:
https://public.tableau.com/views/ElectricVehiclesinHongKong/Story1?:embed=y&:display_count=yes