Transport electrification is a necessary component of any global net-zero emissions strategy. However, electric vehicles (EVs) have faced significant challenges scaling up in both developed and developing markets due to higher prices, lack of consumer confidence, and limited infrastructure. EV uptake usually faces a “chicken and egg” problem: consumers want confidence in the availability of charging infrastructure before purchasing an electric vehicle, and investors want confidence in the penetration of EVs before investing in charging infrastructure. This problem is further complicated by the wide range of infrastructure options that meet different consumer needs, and the additionally high uncertainty about the future utilization of charging stations, making EV infrastructure a very risky investment. In face of this challenge, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) asked the Columbia Capstone team to compose a white paper highlighting possible actions to facilitate the development of public charging infrastructure across its Countries of Operation (CoO). 

The Capstone team identified the best routes and conditions for EV infrastructure investment through two lenses: policy environments and financing mechanisms. The team first explored the policy environments that are conducive to EV and EV charging uptake based on existing policy regimes, as well as assess the potential impact of these policies in specific contexts. The team then analyzed existing and potential financing mechanisms that EBRD could utilize in channeling funds toward EV charging, and provided recommendations on how EBRD should prioritize different financing opportunities in EV infrastructure markets. Through policy advisory and targeted investments, EBRD is expected to efficiently promote the development of EV charging infrastructure and guide immature EV markets to a more sustainable future.