September 26: Within the first two months of the current fiscal year 2078/79, four-wheeler electric vehicles worth Rs 440 million have been imported into the country. The import of electric vehicles was completely halted in the first two months of the last fiscal year. It was due to the impact of increase in the customs duty by the then government.
According to the data provided by the Department of Customs, a total of 142 jeeps, cars and vans worth Rs 442 million have been imported from mid-June to mid-August. The then Finance Minister Yuba Raj Khatiwada had increased the customs duty on electric vehicles from 40 to 80 percent. With the increase in customs duty, import of electric vehicles was halted from May to August last year.
In the 12 months of the previous fiscal year 2077/78, only 249 electric jeeps, cars and vans were imported. During that period, electric jeeps, vans and cars worth Rs 657.8 million were imported. In the fiscal year 2066/67, more than 600 such vehicles were imported into the country.
The government has completely removed the excise duty on electric vehicles through the Financial Ordinance 2078/79 BS and also reduced the customs duty. Krishna Prasad Dulal, president of NADA Automobile Association of Nepal, said that the government has facilitated the import of electric vehicles which has resulted in good business.
The replacement budget has given continuity to the provision of 10 to 15 percent customs duty on the import of electric vehicles proposed in the ordinance budget issued by the then Finance Minister Bishnu Poudel. "The demand for electric vehicles had been the same as before," said Dulal, chairman of NADA adding, “The sales hit the ground due to increase in customs duty. But now, the demand for electric vehicles has increased in the market.”