Interview: Malta-China cooperation on green transportation "promising," says CEO of top auto dealer

  • World
  • Tuesday, 04 Jun 2024

VALLETTA, June 3 (Xinhua) -- Collaboration between Malta and China in green transportation has "very promising" potential, Stefan Deguara, CEO of GasanZammit Motors Limited, told Xinhua in a recent interview.

GasanZammit, Malta's long-standing car importer which began its business in 1928, has imported BYD electric vehicles (EVs) since September last year, marking the start of its partnership with the leading Chinese EV manufacturer.

Statistics showed that during the first four months of this year, about 30 percent of total vehicle registrations in Malta were electric vehicles, a trend significantly bolstered by government initiatives favoring electrification.

"We have witnessed the global rise of China as a key EV manufacturer over recent years," so GasanZammit made a strategic decision to represent a strong Chinese EV maker that would complement its portfolio, Deguara said.

"BYD has developed market-leading EV technology through solid and consistent investment in research and development," Deguara noted, adding that "its strong focus on sustainability and reduction of carbon emissions aligns with our own environmental goals."

Moreover, the BYD brand offers competitive value propositions for Maltese customers without compromising on quality, making them attractive to individual consumers and businesses, encouraging the shift to electrification in Malta, he added.

Currently, BYD models such as the Atto 3, Dolphin and e6 are available in Malta. Deguara expects more models to be introduced in the future thanks to the increasing demand.

Regarding possible EU tariff hikes on Chinese EVs, Deguara warned that such a move could increase costs for European consumers, potentially slowing the adoption rate of affordable EVs. This could also slow the transition to greener technologies and result in a number of EU countries missing electrification targets, he added.

He also dismissed the claim of "overcapacity" of Chinese EVs, emphasizing China's significant role in meeting the growing global demand for EVs.

"Despite the substantial inroads by EVs in global vehicle sales, most vehicle registrations globally remain internal combustion engine vehicles. Therefore, the room for further expansion of EV sales is clearly there," he noted.

Deguara especially highlighted Malta-China collaboration, saying such efforts could lead to advancements in EV technology, increased adoption rates and significant environmental benefits for both countries.

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