The number of electric cars on the road is expected to reach almost 10 million this year, as sales grow this year despite the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a new report by International Energy Agency.
Electric car sales are expected to fare better than the overall passenger car market, with EV sales this year to broadly match the 2.1 million sold in 2019, according to the latest edition of the IEA’s Global EV Outlook. This would account for a record 3% of the total global car sales. Based on data from January to April this year, total global passenger car sales this year are set to decline by 15%.
The Covid-19 pandemic will affect global vehicle markets, and how governments respond to the pandemic will influence the pace of the transition to electric vehicles.
Global electric car sales grew by at least 30 percent every year over the past decade except for 2019, when growth slowed down to 6% as the regulatory environment changed in China and passenger car sales contracted in major markets. Even so, electric cars had another banner year in 2019, securing their highest ever share – 2.6% – of the global car market.
Last year, electric vehicles performed differently in markets worldwide. China remained by far the largest electric car market in the world, accounting for half sold in 2019. More than 1 million electric cars were sold in China in 2019, a 2% decrease from the previous year. Europe was the second largest market, with 561,000 cars sold in 2019. The United States followed with 327,000 cars sold.
Electric cars are expected to account for nearly 1% of the global car stock with this year’s sales. However, the report explains that second waves of the pandemic and slower-than-expected economic recovery could lead to different outcomes. Ultimately, government responses to the pandemic and how consumers emerge from the crisis will determine what happens to electric car markets in 2020 and beyond.
Electric vehicles play a critical role in meeting the environmental goals of the IEA’s Sustainable Development Scenario to reduce local air pollution and to address climate change. In 2019, all electric vehicles combined avoided the consumption of almost 0.6 million barrels of oil products per day globally. Also, electricity generation to supply the global electric vehicle fleet emitted about half the amount that would have been emitted from an equivalent fleet of internal combustion engine vehicles.
In the Sustainable Development Scenario, the global electric vehicle stock (excluding two/three-wheelers) grows by 36% annually, reaching 245 million vehicles in 2030 – more than 30 times above today’s level. In 2030, electric vehicles reduce GHG emissions by almost half compared to an equivalent fleet of internal combustion engine vehicles in the Stated Policies Scenario and by two-thirds in the Sustainable Development Scenario.
Global EV Outlook, the flagship publication of the Electric Vehicles Initiative (EVI), combines historical analysis with projections to 2030, providing key insights on electric vehicle and charging infrastructure deployment, ownership cost, energy use, carbon dioxide emissions and battery material demand. This year’s edition analyses the development of the global EV market and the impact of Covid-19, recent policy developments from around the world, EV projections for 2030, the technology and environmental performance of batteries and potential roles of EVs in power systems.
Post-COVID-19, regaining citizen’s trust should be a priority for governments
The COVID-19 crisis has demonstrated governments’ ability to respond to a major global crisis with extraordinary flexibility, innovation and determination. However, emerging evidence suggests that much more could have been done in advance to bolster resilience and many actions may have undermined trust and transparency between governments and their citizens, according to a new OECD report.
Government at a Glance 2021 says that one of the biggest lessons of the pandemic is that governments will need to respond to future crises at speed and scale while safeguarding trust and transparency. “Looking forward, we must focus simultaneously on promoting the economic recovery and avoiding democratic decline” said OECD Director of Public Governance Elsa Pilichowski. “Reinforcing democracy should be one of our highest priorities.”
Countries have introduced thousands of emergency regulations, often on a fast track. Some alleviation of standards is inevitable in an emergency, but must be limited in scope and time to avoid damaging citizen perceptions of the competence, openness, transparency, and fairness of government.
Governments should step up their efforts in three areas to boost trust and transparency and reinforce democracy:
Tackling misinformation is key. Even with a boost in trust in government sparked by the pandemic in 2020, on average only 51% of people in OECD countries for which data is available trusted their government. There is a risk that some people and groups may be dissociating themselves from traditional democratic processes.
It is crucial to enhance representation and participation in a fair and transparent manner. Governments must seek to promote inclusion and diversity, support the representation of young people, women and other under-represented groups in public life and policy consultation. Fine-tuning consultation and engagement practices could improve transparency and trust in public institutions, says the report. Governments must also level the playing field in lobbying. Less than half of countries have transparency requirements covering most of the actors that regularly engage in lobbying.
Strengthening governance must be prioritised to tackle global challenges while harnessing the potential of new technologies. In 2018, only half of OECD countries had a specific government institution tasked with identifying novel, unforeseen or complex crises. To be fit for the future, and secure the foundations of democracy, governments must be ready to act at speed and scale while safeguarding trust and transparency.
Governments must also learn to spend better, according to Government at a Glance 2021. OECD countries are providing large amounts of support to citizens and businesses during this crisis: measures ongoing or announced as of March 2021 represented, roughly, 16.4% of GDP in additional spending or foregone revenues, and up to 10.5% of GDP via other means. Governments will need to review public spending to increase efficiency, ensure that spending priorities match people’s needs, and improve the quality of public services.
Sweden: Invest in skills and the digital economy to bolster the recovery from COVID-19
Sweden’s economy is on the road to recovery from the shock of the COVID-19 crisis, yet risks remain. Moving ahead with a labour reform to facilitate adaptation in a fast-changing economic environment, and investing in digital skills and infrastructure, will be crucial to revive employment and build a sustainable recovery, according to the latest OECD Economic Survey of Sweden.
The pandemic triggered a severe recession in Sweden, despite mild distancing measures and swift government action to protect people and businesses. GDP fell by less than in many other European economies in 2020, thanks to reinforced short-time work, compensation to firms for lost revenue and measures to prop up the financial system, but unemployment still rose sharply. Solid public finances provided room for further stimulus in 2021 to buttress the recovery.
The Survey recommends maintaining targeted support to people and firms until the pandemic subsides, then focusing on strengthening vocational training and skills and increasing investment in areas like high-speed internet and low-carbon transport. Addressing regional inequality, which is low but rising, should also be a priority as the recovery takes hold.
The Survey shows that Sweden has been among the most resilient OECD countries in the face of a historic shock. Yet, like other economies, it faces challenges from demographic changes and the shift to green, digital economies. Investments in education and training, and labour reforms along the lines negotiated by the social partners, will support job creation and strengthen economic resilience. Building on Sweden’s leadership in digital innovation and diffusion will also be key for driving productivity.
After a 3% contraction in 2020, interrupting several years of growth, the Survey projects a rebound in activity with 3.9% growth in 2021 and 3.4% in 2022 as industrial production resumes and exports recover. The recovery in world trade is bolstering the Swedish economy, however the country remains vulnerable to potential disruptions in global value chains.
|The pandemic has aggravated a mismatch in Sweden’s job market, with unfilled vacancies for highly qualified workers coinciding with high unemployment for low-skilled workers and immigrants. The public employment service needs strengthening to provide better support to jobseekers, including immigrants and women, and labour policies should strike the right balance between supporting businesses and workers and supporting transitions away from declining businesses towards growing sectors.|
A rising share of youths and older people in the population, especially in remote areas, is affecting the finances of local governments, which provide the bulk of welfare services. Strengthening local government budgets and ensuring equal welfare provision across the country will require providing tax income to poorer regions more efficiently and raising the economic growth potential across regions through investments in innovation. Improving coordination between government entities and reinforcing the role of universities in local economic networks would help achieve that aim.
Fewer women than men will regain work during COVID-19 recovery
Fewer women will regain jobs lost to the COVID-19 pandemic during the recovery period, than men, according to a new study released on Monday by the UN’s labour agency.
In Building Forward Fairer: Women’s rights to work and at work at the core of the COVID-19 recovery, the International Labour Organization (ILO) highlights that between 2019 and 2020, women’s employment declined by 4.2 per cent globally, representing 54 million jobs, while men suffered a three per cent decline, or 60 million jobs.
This means that there will be 13 million fewer women in employment this year compared to 2019, but the number of men in work will likely recover to levels seen two years ago.
This means that only 43 per cent of the world’s working-age women will be employed in 2021, compared to 69 per cent of their male counterparts.
The ILO paper suggests that women have seen disproportionate job and income losses because they are over-represented in the sectors hit hardest by lockdowns, such as accommodation, food services and manufacturing.
Not all regions have been affected in the same way. For example, the study revealed that women’s employment was hit hardest in the Americas, falling by more than nine per cent.
This was followed by the Arab States at just over four per cent, then Asia-Pacific at 3.8 per cent, Europe at 2.5 per cent and Central Asia at 1.9 per cent.
In Africa, men’s employment dropped by just 0.1 per cent between 2019 and 2020, while women’s employment decreased by 1.9 per cent.
Throughout the pandemic, women faired considerably better in countries that took measures to prevent them from losing their jobs and allowed them to get back into the workforce as early as possible.
In Chile and Colombia, for example, wage subsidies were applied to new hires, with higher subsidy rates for women.
And Colombia and Senegal were among those nations which created or strengthened support for women entrepreneurs.
Meanwhile, in Mexico and Kenya quotas were established to guarantee that women benefited from public employment programmes.
To address these imbalances, gender-responsive strategies must be at the core of recovery efforts, says the agency.
It is essential to invest in the care economy because the health, social work and education sectors are important job generators, especially for women, according to ILO.
Moreover, care leave policies and flexible working arrangements can also encourage a more even division of work at home between women and men.
The current gender gap can also be tackled by working towards universal access to comprehensive, adequate and sustainable social protection.
Promoting equal pay for work of equal value is also a potentially decisive and important step.
Domestic violence and work-related gender-based violence and harassment has worsened during the pandemic – further undermining women’s ability to be in the workforce – and the report highlights the need to eliminate the scourge immediately.
Promoting women’s participation in decision-making bodies, and more effective social dialogue, would also make a major difference, said ILO.
7 Expert Tips for Wish List Travel without Breaking the Bank
Although most travelers were grounded since March 2020, their wanderlust continued to thrive. And now, as restrictions loosen in many...
No pathway to reach the Paris Agreement’s 1.5˚C goal without the G20
“The world urgently needs a clear and unambiguous commitment to the 1.5 degree goal of the Paris Agreement from all...
Economic Recovery Plans Essential to Delivering Inclusive and Green Growth
EU member states must ensure careful and efficient implementation of economic recovery plans that support inclusion and growth to bounce...
Reforms Key to Romania’s Resilient Recovery
Over the past decade, Romania has achieved a remarkable track record of high economic growth, sustained poverty reduction, and rising...
Floods in Europe, Turkey, China and India
The residents of Erfurt in Thuringia, where Martin Luther lived and studied, had never seen anything like it. The main...
Examining the impacts of Globalization: A Case study of Afghanistan
Globalization is often considered as one of the most important and transformative events in the 21st century. It has led...
The Nuclear future of East Asia
In the face of North Korea and China’s continuous expansion and advancement in their nuclear arsenal in the past decade,...
Intelligence3 days ago
The New World Order: The conspiracy theory and the power of the Internet
Green Planet3 days ago
Six things you can do to bring back mangroves
Green Planet3 days ago
Climate change could spark floods in world’s largest desert lake
International Law2 days ago
Crime of Ecocide: Greening the International Criminal Law
Reports3 days ago
Sweden: Invest in skills and the digital economy to bolster the recovery from COVID-19
Environment3 days ago
Western Indian Ocean region has declared 550,000 square kilometers as protected
Americas2 days ago
Indictment of Trump associate threatens UAE lobbying success
South Asia2 days ago
Why France holds the key to India’s Multilateral Ambitions