Business

Thursday 21 September 2017

BP aims to plug into electric vehicle market at filling stations

BP Chief Executive Bob Dudley
BP Chief Executive Bob Dudley

Karolin Schaps and Ron Bousso

BP is in talks with electric vehicle makers on partnering to offer battery recharging docks at its global network of fuel service stations as it seeks to benefit from the move away from diesel and petrol cars, Chief Executive Bob Dudley told Reuters yesterday.

The expected rapid growth in the use of electric vehicles in the coming decades is threatening oil companies' business model as demand for some road fuels could plateau as early as the late 2020s, according to some oil company estimates.

Looking to take a slice of the growing market, London-based BP is examining different ways to get involved in the sector.

"We have discussions going on with a lot of the EV [electric vehicle] manufacturers to have a tie-up with our retail network for charging," Dudley said in an interview.

Rival Royal Dutch Shell has already launched a pilot scheme to install battery charging docks at a few of its service stations in Britain and the Netherlands.

The number of electric vehicles on roads is forecast to grow significantly in the coming decades, particularly in cities, with BP estimating that there will be 100m by 2035, up from 1.2m in 2015. Dudley has been a vocal advocate of the oil and gas industry's need to take part in the move away from fossil fuels towards using cleaner sources of energy in order to combat global warming.

But BP, along with rivals including Shell have yet to come up with a clear plan for increasing their interests in renewable energy production such as solar and wind.

BP's shares rose by more than 3pc at one stage yesterday to trade around 459 pence after the company reported a 10pc rise in oil and gas production in the second quarter. (Reuters)

Irish Independent

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