The PRA has taken a second opportunity in a week to tell MPs that forecourts should not be forced to install electric chargers. Just days after PRA chairman Brian Madderson addressed MPs scrutinising the Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill (see News Extra, page 10), the PRA provided evidence to an inquiry into electric charging infrastructure being conducted by the Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy Select Committee.

In its submission, the PRA called for a market-led development of the market, rather than the method prescribed in the Bill with government forcing businesses to install equipment, and the threat of sanctions if they do not comply.

PRA said its members were keen to invest in viable alternative fuel provisions such as electric charge points, but costs were prohibitive and the government should be exploring ways to incentivise their uptake.

It said some PRA members had been quoted as much as £50,000 to install charging equipment, but with electric vehicles only making up 1.8% of new car sales, the required return on that investment was not currently possible.

It also pointed out that the technology was developing rapidly, with charging times falling rapidly and a lack of standardisation in equipment, meaning businesses would need to judge when the time was right to enter the market.