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[Weekender] World’s first EV expo kicks off on Jejudo

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Published : 2014-03-14 21:03
Updated : 2014-03-14 21:08

The International Electric Vehicle Expo, the world’s first exhibition solely dedicated to fully-electric vehicles, will be held from March 15-21 on Jejudo Island, with some 40 carmakers, battery suppliers and other EV-related companies joining from Korea and abroad.

Seven carmakers ― Renault Samsung Motors, Kia Motors, BMW, Nissan, GM Korea, Mia Electric and Tajima ― will display their latest EV models during the weeklong program. The BMW i3, Nissan Leaf and the Mia minibus will make their Korean debuts Saturday.

Other key participating companies include battery makers Samsung SDI and LG Chem, Korea Electric Power Corp. and the electric equipment supplier LSIS, while smaller manufacturers of electric bicycles and EV parts are expected to spice up the event as well.

A series of academic conferences is planned to discuss ways to boost the nascent electric car market. Industry people and experts will have open discussions about diverse topics ranging from the government’s EV policies, to charging infrastructure, to energy storage systems.

Key speakers include Renault Group’s head of electric vehicles Vincent Carre, Mia Electric CEO Michele Boos, Nissan’s vice president in charge of global sales Billy Hayes and Lee Seung-hoon, chairman of the Presidential Committee on Green Growth of Korea.

“The world’s first EV expo will become a good opportunity to check out all the latest trends happening in the electric vehicle market,” said Kim Dae-hwan, chairman of the organizing committee. He predicted some 50,000 people would join the event during the week.

“Carmakers and other companies will be able to build a new business network with each other and pave the way for them to take an early edge in Korea and Asia,” he added.

On the sidelines of the event, the Jejudo government will start receiving applications for this year’s EV incentives worth 23 million won ($21,000) per purchase. A total of 500 recipients will be picked randomly from among the applicants, with the finalists to be announced in April.

By Lee Ji-yoon (jylee@heraldcorp.com)

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