My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Minister of Justice Mark Golding Environmental Policy means All-Electric Vehicles and Flex-Fuel Vehicles coming

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Minister of Justice Mark Golding Environmental Policy means All-Electric Vehicles and Flex-Fuel Vehicles coming

“One imperative is the importation of more environmentally friendly units in the island, particularly in terms of emissions, fuel use and strict adherence to age-limit restrictions. The intention is to avoid an over-abundance of older and often less efficient units in the island”

Minister of Justice Mark Golding at the launch of the company's new Suzuki showroom at South Camp Road, Kingston, on Thursday, November 29th 2012

There’s a bit of panic now among User Car Retailers.  It appears that the GOJ (Government of Jamaica) is finally going to make policy changes to Vehicle Importation that, if I’m reading the Stars and Symbols right, means that All-Electric Vehicles and Flex-Fuel Vehicles will have the Common External Tariff removed altogether.

This after the GOJ had implemented a broad increase of the Common External Tariff on all imported vehicles in June 2012 moving from 20% to 30%. The GOJ may also be allowing Private Sector Companies to source their own Vehicles themselves, bypassing Local Car dealers altogether in a bid to reduce the cost of outfitting their fleets of vehicles. Something sure to make Used and New Car Dealers cringe if this trend catches on via Legislation!

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This as stated in the article “Motor vehicle policy changes coming”, published Monday December 3, 2012 8:53 am, The Jamaica Gleaner. Possibly even the 2013 Nissan Leaf or other Range Extender Technology based All-Electric Vehicles may be making an appearance in Jamaica as per my blog article entitled “Nissan Debuts the 2013 Nissan Leaf - 228 km range good for commute to The House at the End of the Street”. If this development pans out, my blog article pitches an argument that’s very compelling.

This as promised in the article “PM promises 'fair' motor- import policy review”, published Sunday December 2, 2012, The Jamaica Gleaner with the overall intention as implied above: Reducing Jamaica’s fuel bill by having more Fuel and Energy Efficient Vehicles on the Road.

Looks like the GOJ’s under pressure from the Media (and yours truly!!) who made a point of throwing out the Bad Apple at their choice of purchasing SUV’s that were by their very nature fuel inefficient as noted in as per my blog article entitled “GOJ buys SUV's for Ministers of Government from Toyota Jamaica - All-Electric Vehicle Importation Support is needed from GOJ to be The Master of our Fuel Consumption”. This as the GOJ tries to reduce its Fuel Bill, sending a contradictory message to the Jamaican Public.

But more importantly is what’s at stake; the Environment and the Air we breathe. If you’d perused my blog article entitled “Nissan Debuts the 2013 Nissan Leaf - 228 km range good for commute to The House at the End of the Street”, it should be abundantly clear to you that All-Electric Vehicles are more fuel efficient and save the city-dwelling commuter on Gasoline. Being able to drive for two (2) weeks on a single charge for short commutes about Kingston is as good as it get with All-Electric Vehicles.

Plus, a recent study by the Institute for Automotive Research (IFA) at the Nürtingen–Geislingen University, which is located of Porsche and Mercedes-Benz in Stuttgart, Germany, reveals a 35% reduction on average in Maintenance costs over an eight (8) year period when compared to a Gas-powered Vehicles as stated in the article “Study shows EV maintenance is cheaper by a third when compared to regular cars”, published DECEMBER 7, 2012, BY JACOB JOSEPH, DigitalTrends

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Real World Data folks, also viewable in the article “Electric Car Maintenance A Third Cheaper Than Combustion Vehicles?” published December 6, 2012 By Antony Ingram Antony Ingram, TheGreenCarReports!

All-Electric Vehicle Recharging Stations will start springing up like poppies, albeit self-recharging at home may be more popular, much in the same way one currently walks with a USB Cable to recharge their Blackberry, if Dwight Cousins, Energy Solutions Department Manager at Isratech Jamaica Limited in his letter to Editor entitled “More on Isratech's solar operation” published Sunday November 11, 2012, The Jamaica Gleaner is right about the reduced pricing of Solar Panel construction in Jamaica.

Used Car Dealers are already facing shortage of spare parts since 2010 as per the article back in October 2010 entitled Spare Parts shortage hits used-car Trade”, published Friday October 22 2010, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Now that shortage’s set to get more acute based on the words coming from JUCDA (Jamaica Used Car Dealers' Association) President Lynvalle Hamilton as stated in the article “Brace for higher used-car prices, says JUCDA”, published Friday December 14, 2012 by Marcella Scarlett, Business Reporter The Jamaica Gleaner due to following factors:

1.      Stronger demand for Used Cars from other Developing Countries such as India and Africa, who’re willing to pay higher prices for used vehicles
2.      Japanese themselves are holding on to their Motor Vehicles longer, despite Japanese mandated law for vehicles to be change every three (3) years
3.      The sliding Jamaica dollar and the strengthening yen against the US currency. In plain English, more Jamaican dollar to get the US Dollars which are in turn losing value against the Japanese yen, making vehicles more expensive.
4.      Lack of a Local Manufacturing of Motor Vehicles in Jamaica
5.      Higher import tariffs imposed by the GOJ on Used Cars, as explained above

More importantly, this change’ll benefit Fuel-Efficient Vehicles such as the 2013 Tata Nano which goes on sale on Saturday December 15 2012 as reported in my blog article entitled “2013 Tata Nano on available in Jamaica from Metis Motors by December 15th 2012 - All-Electric Vehicles potential in Jamaica Gangham Style” and my Geezam blog article entitled “Metis Motors intro’s 2nd Generation Tata Nano to Ja signaling Black and Yellow for All-Electric Vehicles”.

Manufacturing of All-Electric Vehicles may also be possible in Jamaica too, once the Cost of Energy goes down significantly. Ditto the development of a Local Bio-Fuel Industry as predicted in my blog article entitledATL Automotive to benefit from Low-Sulphur Diesel in 12 Months Time - Bio-Fuels Resident Evil Apocalypseand the use of Auto LPG as per my Geezam blog article entitled “Auto LPG as a Motor Vehicle Fuel”.

Expect an official announcement in a few days’ time. Expect too, news on the use of Cameras in Capturing Traffic offences. This is the much argued Automated Traffic Ticketing System which would be possible via legislative changes in the use of Cameras be it Videos, Still images or Recorded Sounds as a habeus corpus for a crime as argued in my blog article entitled “Handheld Traffic Ticketing Units for Jamaican Police a success but no Automated Traffic Ticketing System - GOJ fears the All Seeing Eyes of CCTV”.

Hopefully too this Automated Traffic Ticketing System along with Police with Handheld Traffic Ticketing Units will Ticket people with Motor Vehicles that are also creating a pollution nuisance and not meeting NEPA’s (National Environment Protection Agency) and the BSJ (Bureau of Standard Jamaica) standards as it relates to Vehicle Emissions. That’s a bigger source of revenue than just red lights; lots of drivers driving in Jamaica that have poorly maintained vehicles that in some case may not be even roadworthy, a source of increased Revenues for the cash-strapped GOJ.

Stayed tuned to my blog folks! Change you Can Believe in is Coming in the New Motor Vehicle World, All-Electric and Flex-Fuel Vehicle Style as the Used Car Dealers are on The Guilt Trip (2012). More on the Automated Traffic Ticketing System changes coming in another article…..

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