President Biden announced that the US government will convert its entire fleet of vehicles to electric vehicles. The announcement came without a time frame, but with the current US vehicle fleet comprising roughly 645,000 vehicles, the transition will take some time.
Governments using their procurement and investment weight to influence market outcomes isn’t a new practice. Norway has accelerated the electric vehicle (EV) transition through a combination of incentives and investments, and wind and solar energy has been a similar story around the world.
This announcement by the US, however, is important due to the scale of the US economy and auto market, the global leadership role of the US, and the fact that the US is a major automobile and technology manufacturer. This announcement signals to automakers around the world that the future will be electric, that the cost of associated infrastructure like charging infrastructure will also decrease more rapidly, and that investors and the public can be confident in orienting their attention towards electric vehicles.
Although it’s a long-term objective, what might this announcement have on electric vehicle markets in the short term?