Funding approved for electromobility centre
12 December 2019, 14:29
The European Commission decided on Monday to approve Sweden’s application for funding for the construction of the electromobility lab SEEL (Swedish Electric Transport Laboratory AB). Approval was granted within the framework of a so-called Important Project of Common European Interest (IPCEI), which has been established by the EU to promote battery production in the European Union.
SEEL is owned by RISE, together with Chalmers University of Technology, and is a national test bed for developing the next generation of sustainable innovative solutions for electric cars, trucks, buses and other electric vehicles such as ships and electric vessels, including battery development. SEEL will be one of the few test centres in Europe able to provide testing for all the parts required by electrified transport
“Climate change is one of humanity’s major challenges. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector is crucial. SEEL will facilitate the transition to an electrified transport sector. The investment in SEEL also aims to strengthen the competitiveness of the Swedish automotive industry and to help Sweden remain at the forefront of transport sector innovation,” says Minister for Enterprise Ibrahim Baylan.
In the summer of 2018, the Swedish government mandated that the Swedish Energy Agency provide SEK 575 million to fund the construction of a test centre for electromobility for the 2018-2021 period. However, issuance has been delayed due to the fact that the process to obtain approval for state funding from the European Commission has been more extensive than initially anticipated. The European Commission has now approved state funding for the SEEL electromobility lab within the framework of an IPCEI, that is, an EU project covering an important European value chain. The project involves 17 participants from seven Member States comprising a total of €3.2 billion in state funding, and is expected to run until 2031.
The decision means that construction can begin, but that the basis for the state funding application has been amended in relation to the government’s original mandate to the Swedish Energy Agency in the summer of 2018 to reflect that SEEL participates in the IPCEI described above. The government has therefore made decisions today that allow the Swedish Energy Agency to issue the funds.