Friday, March 24, 2023

Chinese electric cars and motorcycles are taking hold on Cuban streets

Diario del Pueblo Digital 2023:02:07.15:43

Photo: Vcg

Life has changed for Cuban Yoswani Abreu after buying a three-wheeled Chinese electric bike last year.

The 35-year-old man, who lives in Marianao, a district of Havana, said his new vehicle requires less maintenance because it uses an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine.

He said, ‘I have taken a wise decision. “With this electric trike, I’m saving money because fuel isn’t required. That’s no mean feat.”

Thousands of Cubans across the country have started using Chinese electric cars and motorcycles amid fuel shortages and tough US economic sanctions that have dealt a severe blow to the island nation’s transport system.

Amelia Rosales, 26, owns a Chinese electric motorcycle and uses it for work and leisure.

“I use this motorcycle to work as a delivery person for a fast food restaurant in downtown Havana,” he said. “Besides, I take my daughter to school in the morning.”

To increase the presence of electric means of personal transportation in the region, China’s Tianjin Dongxing Industrial and Trade Group teamed up with Cuban state-owned Minerva to form Electric Vehicles Caribbean (VEDCA), a joint venture that quickly won the market Is. of the island.

About 15 kilometers west of Havana, VEDCA has built an electric car and motorcycle factory that covers an area of ​​9,000 square meters and employs about 60 workers. Official data showed that since March 2019, VEDCA has produced 2,500 electric motorcycles, 1,500 electric tricycles and other products, with sales reaching 6 million USD.

This is the first joint venture of its kind between China and Cuba, said Wei Yunpu, director of the Chinese company.

“There are a lot of old vehicles in Cuba, which makes it difficult for people to buy car parts,” he said. “Electric cars are environment-friendly and will help solve maintenance-related problems.”

“This factory is also a new source of employment that will contribute greatly to the well-being of many Cuban families,” said Julio Oscar Pérez, VEDCA’s general director.

By 2023, the joint venture intends to ramp up production to 10,000 electric motorcycles and 10,000 electric trikes, as well as start assembly of 500 four-wheeler motorcycles.

“The quality of our production is a top priority,” said Rinaldo Manuel Luis, a young factory worker at VEDCA. “I’m proud to be a part of it.”

(Web editor: Zhou Yu, Zhao Xian)

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