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Global EV Transportation Review

Key Regional Markets


Norway has set the benchmark for the transition to electrification of transport. In terms of new registrations, electric vehicles have just about replaced conventional ones. Meanwhile, the growth continues to build upon consumer demand and preference momentum. The incentive-led growth model is no longer valid, with the gradual rationalization underway for full-scale market orientation. A vast scope remains yet to be utilized in the infrastructure demand and the battery manufacturing opportunity.

GDP (Current Prices) USD (2021)

482.18 bn

GDP Growth Forecast (constant prices) (2021-2025)


EV Penetration

79.3% (battery electric) of the total new passenger vehicle registrations in 2022

EV Target

Zero-emission (electric or hydrogen) drivetrain in new passenger vehicle sales by 2025

Planned Year of Phasing Out ICE Vehicles


GDP Source: IMF, World Economic Outlook

EV Penetration and Trend

New Registrations in Passenger Electric Vehicles

Source: Association of Danish Car Importers

The acceleration in Norwegian electric vehicle penetration has been consistent. During the five years of 2018-2022, the number of new registrations grew at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 32%. The penetration of almost 80% is entirely that of battery electric vehicles. Adding the plug-in hybrid will make it even higher. But plug-in vehicles are not on the same footing with the target of zero-emission new registrations by 2025. Norway’s penetration of electric passenger vehicles has reached a tipping point of mainstream adoption, where the purchase of the internal combustion engine appears off the track.

New Electric Bus Registrations

Source: European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA)

While the demand momentum stays, the new registrations reported by the end of 2022 carry a rider. There was a massive rush by December 2022 as consumers sought to make the most of the expiring tax exemption. The resulting jump in numbers helped reach the penetration as observed. A correction is expected in the same – the decline in January 2023 registrations could be interpreted as one. All the same, a strong supply side with expanded offerings at low price points helps maintain the market’s bullish outlook.

The momentum is also high in the public transportation segment. The government has set a target to ensure that all new city buses are emission-free or fossil-free fuel (biogas) by 2025. Procurement has thus been picking up across the municipalities. The city council of Oslo has a stated goal of electrification of the entire bus fleet by 2023. The overall trend, however, indicates an uneven progress due to the decline reported in 2021.

Concerns around sustainability have led policymakers to focus on shared mobility options as vehicle ownership loses relevance in an emission-free environment. The city of Bergen took the lead in this direction, becoming the first Norwegian city to start a mobility hub. The objective was to establish permanent, reserved parking spaces for shared vehicles, preferably electric ones.

Charging Infrastructure

Source: National Charging Station Database (NOBIL)

During 2018-2022, the total installed base of charging points registered a CAGR of 22%. While the slow Type-2 chargers hold the predominant share (reflecting the importance of residential charging), fast-chargers’ contribution is gradually rising. The highest growth in the network in the review period came from the fast-chargers (CCS 50kW+). The demand is much higher than what the existing network can service. As a fallout of the high penetration rate, the country has a high ratio of electric vehicles per charging point (33.6) than other leading markets. Regarding the overall network expansion/reach, Oslo ranks among the top European capitals, with 5.47 chargers per sq. km. (as of July 2022).

Home-based charging has had a significant share. Over 80% of electric vehicle users charge at their homes. Accordingly, this segment has been suitably helped by subsidies and regulatory norms for capacity growth. For residential and passenger vehicle applications, the initial growth phase of slow charging points helped set the base. Private investments primarily lead the next phase of fast-charging.

The cost of charging has lately been an issue due to the rise in energy costs. As of September 2022, some leading charging operators reported a 25% – 75% price rise at the charging stations. There was some government support available to cushion the home-based charging costs. For the standalone stations, however, the cost increase considerably narrowed the gap against conventional refueling of vehicles.

Policy Regulation

The Norwegian government is gradually winding down the subsidy-led growth model of the electric vehicle market. This has been part of the discussions for some time, as the government weighed the budgetary impact of the support measures vis-à-vis the results and objectives. The considerations align with the principles of equity (paying for the available public infrastructure) and viability (revenue shortfall) of public finance.

The first in the list of incentives phased out is the value-added tax (VAT) exemption. With effect from January 1, 2023, the government abolished the VAT exemption for passenger vehicles costing over kr500,000. The existing tax is at 25% of the incremental car value above kr500,000, which is still relatively lower than the conventional ones. In addition, electric vehicles are taxable by weight – kr12.5 per kg above 500kg of vehicle weight. The weight-based tax effectively covers all electric vehicles. Electric vehicles still benefit from other tax exemptions that are not available to non-electric ones. For instance, there is a one- time fee together with a flat 25% VAT on the list price that is not payable for electric vehicles.

There are ongoing deliberations about other incentives. One is the benefits extended in terms of tolls for electric vehicles in the larger cities. Electric vehicles need to pay just 50% of the toll that conventional vehicle owners otherwise pay. The plan is to progressively raise this share to 70% by 2025 when it is eliminated (only zero-emission transport to be sold by 2025).

In the case of the charging infrastructure, some of the critical measures in the regulatory framework helped set the pace of growth. One of them is the ‘right to charge’ wherein households could seek charging facilities as an entitlement from their respective municipal or local authorities. Local authorities have been extending incentives, such as free parking, reserved lanes, subsidizing a part of the upfront cost of charging point installation, etc. Steps are underway to harmonize the charging stations’ operations for ease of access – as one example, all the charging stations installed from January 2023 must offer a card payment option. A separate timeline is expected for other charging stations.

Market Opportunity

The demand for charging infrastructure is set to grow in Norway as the policy goals expand to cover more modes of transportation. While the short-term goals aim to have 100% emission-free passenger cars, light vans, and new city buses by 2025, all new heavy vans, 75% of new long-distance buses, and 50% of new lorries need to be emission-free by 2030. This is likely to place additional pressure on the charging infrastructure. The transition to emission-free transportation is expected to create a fleet of 1.5 million EVs by 2030, as per NVE, the electricity market regulator in Norway.

The fast-charging segment is attracting interest from multiple stakeholders. The city of Oslo has a grant scheme for fast-charging stations for electric trucks and buses. The first round of funding covered 80% of the installation costs. As of end 2022, the scheme had total disbursement worth €2.3 million. Subsequent funding rounds are expected in this regard to enable capacity expansion. In May 2022, the equipment manufacturer ABB, in collaboration with the charging operator Eviny, installed the first Terra 360 series of 360kW fast-chargers. The pilot installation will be followed up with a phased rollout across the locations of Eviny’s operation, besides others.

In 2022, the automaker Tesla opened its proprietary fast-charging network for vehicles of other makes, at company-determined prices. Tesla’s initiative is a pilot under evaluation. Adding to the list of initiatives, in August 2022, Chinese electric vehicle company NIO launched its second battery charging and swapping station in Norway. Battery swapping is unexplored and could present an alternate option to the country’s overall charging network. Various other enterprises are approaching the charging market through partnerships. In collaboration with charging operator Recharge, IKEA Norway aims to have over 300 new chargers within 2024. The energy company/utility StatKraft has a wholly owned charging operator company Mer for capitalizing the opportunities. The company is of late exploring diversity in Mer’s shareholding, for which financial advisors have been appointed.

Battery manufacturing is another significant investment avenue, especially with the Gigafactory project pipeline. In January 2023, Elinor Batteries (established by the company Vallinor) announced its plan to set up a Gigafactory in Orkland. With an estimated investment of €1 billion, the first production batch is expected by 2026. The company FREYR Battery meanwhile is progressing with ongoing development work for its Gigafactory project (named Gigafactory Arctic). The total construction and commissioning cost is expected to be worth €1.7 billion in capital investment. Notably, FREYR has signed agreements with Statkraft and Glencore for renewable energy and material sourcing, respectively. Another company, Morrow Batteries, is in the development stages of an upcoming battery cell production facility in Arendal, Norway.

It is noteworthy that in June 2022, the government launched the national battery strategy, outlining the planned policy steps to help facilitate the local battery manufacturing value chain. Key steps in this include the provision of capital, loans, and guarantees to enable private capital investment, supporting pilots, facilitating access to renewable energy, development of land and infrastructure, and industrial partnerships with other countries.


The rate of transition to transport electrification appears aligned with the country’s policy goal to have only a zero-emission (electric or hydrogen) drivetrain by 2025 in new passenger vehicle sales. With the progressive maturity of the business, the phaseout of subsidy support and withdrawal of tax benefits could temporarily impact sales. After the abnormally high sales of December 2022 (the last month for tax benefits on electric vehicles), there was an 80% year-on-year decline in January 2023. While supply shortages played a role, adjustment to complete market orientation may take time.
With passenger electric vehicle adoption becoming almost mainstream, the focus on charging network capacity addition will likely change. While there will be significant scope to expand the overall network, the focus will be on heavy-duty, commercial applications where technology improvisation and timely capacity deployment will be essential. Equally important will be the role of smart charging systems for grid management and charging operators. Furthermore, there is a rising need for a regulatory framework to establish a specific structure and standardization in the charging business.