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HomeDiplomacyThe Rationale Behind the US-ASEAN Electric Vehicle Initiative – The Diplomat

The Rationale Behind the US-ASEAN Electric Vehicle Initiative – The Diplomat

A Tesla Model S electric car on display at an exhibition held in Zhengzhou, Henan, China, November 4, 2018.

credit: Depositphotos

As follow up President Joe Biden responded to the promises made at the US-ASEAN special summit earlier this year: proposed to establish The US-ASEAN electric vehicle initiative proposal at the US-ASEAN Summit held in Cambodia this month.

In announcing the initiative, Biden hopes to work with his ASEAN counterparts to create an integrated electric vehicle (EV) ecosystem in Southeast Asia.Specifically, the initiative concentration On regional EV infrastructure development, region-wide EV adoption, and regional EV solutions and technology development. In addition, the US will assist ASEAN in developing an ASEAN Roadmap for EV implementation.

First, the initiative should be understood as an extension of the Biden administration’s domestic policy. Biden’s passion and support for American-made EVs was evident during the presidential campaign. EVs are future he is the American auto industry pledged Play a more active role in supporting the development of US EVs. Recently, Biden even says EVs are an essential ingredient in restoring American greatness.

Since taking office, Biden has taken concrete steps to boost EV production and adoption in the United States.he is bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Employment LawFor example, the Biden administration invested $7.5 billion in EV chargers, over $7 billion in providing critical minerals and other components needed to produce EV batteries, and over $10 billion in clean transportation and school buses. I can do it.The recently passed Science and Chips Act has no provision specifically addressing EVs, but it does intention It also stimulates their development. enough Advanced chips are essential for the future of EVs. In doing so, the Biden administration is laying the groundwork for his chain of EV manufacturing booms and EV supply in the US.

Given the gigantic Given the market potential in Southeast Asia, the US-ASEAN Electric Vehicle Initiative could boost EV trade between the US and the region, creating more export opportunities for EV manufacturers with plants in the US. For the United States, cooperation with ASEAN is regional Reduced labor costs and abundant minerals essential to EV production will help the United States establish a more secure supply chain.

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Second, the initiative could also work as part of the US strategy to compete with China for global EV leadership. The Biden administration has long US market share of EVsEspecially compared to China. Since then,”beat china” in the EV industry. In recent years, Chinese EV manufacturers have expanded into Southeast Asia and are aiming to expand their business in the region. For example, BYD, Great Wall Motors (GMW), Hozon and Aiways have them all. delivered EV in Southeast Asian countries. SAIC-GM-Wuling (SGMW) When BYD Localized their own EV production in Indonesia and Thailand. In addition, BYD is partnering with the Agency for Science, Technology and Research in Singapore to research and develop EV systems for public transport.

China’s efforts appear to have already produced some results. data Chinese EV makers’ market share in Thailand is expected to rise from 58% in 2021 to around 80% this year. With the new initiative, the Biden administration appears to be looking beyond the car itself when competing with China in Southeast Asia. From EV production to creating EV infrastructure, we aim to shape the local EV ecosystem using U.S. solutions and technology. charging station.

Shortly after the Biden administration decided to launch a US-ASEAN electric vehicle initiative in Cambodia, China’s state media, the Global Times, said that it was merely a “symbolic gestureThe United States was using it to woo ASEAN rather than work together to “achieve a truly prosperous and peaceful ASEAN,” as it claimed to be China’s aim.

But U.S. commitments to Southeast Asia are unlikely to match the investment of resources.Biden speaking at the U.S.-ASEAN summit in Phnom Penh this month announced He requested $825 million for all kinds of aid to Southeast Asia in 2023, but that’s just a drop in the bucket in terms of the region’s needs. It’s likely to fund a number of EV projects, but it’s unclear how much follow-up will follow.

Whatever the outcome, the announcement of the initiative will undoubtedly intensify the already fierce EV race in Southeast Asia. While the Biden administration is doing more protection When introvert Reflecting its attitude toward allies on EVs, the initiative, along with another recent agreement with the United States, is one of the first attempts by the United States to cooperate internationally on EVs. Mexico.compete fiercelyWith its partnership with China, the EV industry, especially in Southeast Asia, could soon become another hotspot for Sino-US competition.

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