African nation Rwanda has taken a huge step to convert all gas-powered motorcycles to electric-powered motorcycles in the country in adoption to sustainable and environmental friendly mobility solutions.
The government of Rwanda has partnered with Rwanda-based Rwandan Electric Mobility to start this initiative towards the use of electric motorcycles in the country’s capital Kigali. Rwanda has a huge motorcycle-based transportation system that includes motorcycle taxi service used by the citizen of Rwanda on a daily basis for commuting and the movement of parcels and packages.
Rwanda has committed to become a carbon-neutral nation by the year 2050.
Rwanda has over 100,000 motorcycles registered in the country out of which nearly half are registered under the motorcycle taxi industry and in the initial phase (five years) this initiative is targeting to covert 30,000 gasoline-powered motorcycles to electric that’s about more than a quarter of bikes registered in Rwanda.
The initial phase is estimated to cost around RWF 150 million that includes technical training of 40 students from the Integrated Polytechnic Regional College of Kigali (IPRC Kigali), as well as the conversion of 80 motorcycles free of charge to their owners and operators.
In a report published by The News Times of Rwanda, the new initiative has started offering its benefits to the early adopters. The news mentions Jean-Paul Habimana, a motorcycle taxi operator residing in Kigali saying “I used to spend Rwf5,000 ($5 USD) per week for engine oil, which is no longer the case. I pay Rwf900 ($0.9 USD) to charge a battery and that covers 60 kilometers compared to 40 kilometers which are covered by a liter of petrol priced at Rwf1,088 ($1.08 USD)”
The new initiative will help reduced carbon emissions, extend service life of vehicles, reduce expenses on operations that includes maintenance and other costs.