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Exclusive Interview with EUROBAT: The battery industry's view on the electrification of cars (part 6)

cars21.com: Seen the impressive sums that are invested into battery companies around the world, how do you evaluate the risk of a “battery bubble”?

Westgeest: I believe that a rich supply in batteries will create more incentive, momentum and enthusiasm to move forward in electrifying transport.There are so many different applications in which batteries are employed, I am certain that the batteries will be put to good use.
 

Exclusive Interview with EUROBAT: The battery industry's view on the electrification of cars (part 5)

cars21.com: Do you see a difference between Western and Eastern member states in the level of interest and in the initiatives that are taken to promote electric mobility?

Westgeest: We cannot tell for every country, but Poland for example is certainly moving along. Poland has a large manufacturing base in the car industry and for such countries it is in their self-interest to move to electric mobility as to be part of the future. So you see countries that you would not expect like Belgium, Poland or maybe Sweden, are doing a lot of research and they try to get their manufacturing industry up to speed up in producing EV components.
 

Exclusive Interview with EUROBAT: The battery industry's view on the electrification of cars (part 4)

cars21.com: Which governmental initiatives to promote electric mobility in general and battery technology in particular do you personally estimate to be the most effective ones? Which country does it right?

Westgeest: Firstly, we need security of legislation. We need to know what restrictions there are on battery systems. We have to ensure that all battery systems can be deployed, that there is a lot of innovation. From a manufacturing point of view, you need to be able to bring new systems to the market and not be constrained by regulatory aspects.
 

Exclusive Interview with EUROBAT: The battery industry's view on the electrification of cars (part 3)

cars21.com: How do you evaluate statements such as by President Obama who wants 1 million EVs on U.S. roads by 2015, versus more conservative estimates by ABB who claims that the car industry calculates with the production of only around 255,000 EVs and PHEVs in the same time frame? Can you give us realistic figures from a battery manufacturer's point of view?

Westgeest: Well, there is a difference in having 1 million EVs on the road or having 1 million EVs produced per year.
Exclusive Interview with EUROBAT

Exclusive Interview with EUROBAT: The battery industry's view on the electrification of cars (part 2)

cars21.com: What is EUROBAT's role in promoting a healthy EV eco-system?

Westgeest: We are involved in the debate on the environmental aspects of battery production, battery handling, the end-of-life of batteries. We are in constant dialogue with the European Commission about existing and future regulation in manufacturing quality and environment, the collection of batteries and the recycling of batteries. These are legislations where EUROBAT has a very strong position.

We also play a role in bringing about the electrification of vehicles and the use of renewable energies. We do this in participating in high-level meetings with European Institutions and are, for example, co-chairing the CENELEC group for standardisation of batteries.

Exclusive Interview with EUROBAT: The battery industry's view on the electrification of cars (part 1)

cars21.com: What is your general outlook on the EV market as association of European automotive and industrial battery manufacturers? How do you evaluate the business opportunity for your members in the EV market, also with the Chinese competition in mind?

Alfons Westgeest:
We have to look at the definition of what electrification is. The whole automotive market is in transformation in terms of how cars are built, designed and imagined. In this respect, we see EUROBAT as part of an Eco-system where the entire automotive industry is involved. And interestingly, our link to battery technologies in other applications now brings the different areas together, when we regard for example the charging of electric vehicles and the use of renewable energies.
 

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