* ABB to supply fast chargers to the Netherlands
* Second nationwide network after Estonia
ZURICH, July 8 The Netherlands will become the
most populous country so far to have a nationwide network of
stations for charging electric vehicles after Dutch
infrastructure group Fastned on Monday picked Swiss engineer ABB
to supply the equipment.
The move is a boost to a technology championed by
environmentalists but shunned by most drivers, in part because
of so-called "range anxiety" - the fear an electric vehicle
might run out of power miles from a charger.
ABB said it would supply more than 200 electric vehicle
stations with chargers, bringing all of the Netherlands' 16.7
million inhabitants within 50 kilometres of a charger.
"This sets an extremely positive signal for consumers and
car makers alike to move forward with electric mobility," Hans
Streng, head of ABB's EV charging infrastructure business, told
ABB will start delivering the chargers, which are capable of
recharging a battery in 15-30 minutes, in September.
Construction of the Fastned stations is expected to be completed
This is the second contract ABB has won to supply a
nationwide network of chargers after installing 165 chargers in
Estonia earlier this year.
The Zurich-based firm is banking on pressure to reduce
pollution and curtail dependency on oil to drive an
electrification of the transport network.
Consultancy Navigant Research expects worldwide sales of
plug-in electric vehicles to reach 3 million a year by 2020,
although that would still be a small proportion of all vehicles
(Reporting by Caroline Copley; Editing by Mark Potter)