The Indonesian government has set a target of mass producing 10,000 electric automobiles in 2014 under a new program that is currently being drafted.
“At the moment, the State-Owned Enterprises Ministry, the Research and Technology Ministry, the National Education Ministry and the Industry Ministry are working on a road map for the national electric automobile industry,” Industry Minister M. S. Hidayat said in Jakarta on Wednesday.
He added that key members of the industry — academicians, state enterprises and the private sector — were currently developing production technology for the vehicle by studying the designs of electric automobiles in other countries.
Automotive industry observer Suhari Sargo, however, said it would be hard for electric automobiles to compete with fuel-propelled vehicles because of the lack of supporting infrastructure.
“There’s a problem with a lack of quality battery [re-charging] facilities. Plus, electric automobiles are predicted to be more costly than [regular] vehicles that are in the same class as them,” Suhari said.
Research and Technology Minister Gusti Muhammad Hatta said earlier that the government was earmarking Rp 100 billion ($10.6 million) for the development of a national electric car by four state universities. The minister has also said that the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) had received Rp 1.2 trillion to develop an electric minibus capable of carrying up to 16 passengers.
Last month, State-Owned Enterprises Minister Dahlan Iskan test drove two electric cars made by two local inventors. He said that he had arranged for a locally made electric sports car to be made and price tagged at Rp 1.5 billion ($159,000).