project news

New cross-border project to stimulate the local business development and e-mobility in Bulgaria and Greece

25 November, 2021

A network of 50 charging stations for electric cars to be implemented till 2023

E.VE.CR.I Local-e, aiming to stimulate local business development and sustainable usage of electric cars, starts its first round table on 26th November in Petrich, Bulgaria. Total of 12 meetings with local authorities, SMEs, NGOs and other participants with interest in the project are to be held during the next months. The purpose of the round tables is to explain the benefits and impact an e-car charging station could bring to local businesses in the region and for the participants to declare an interest for construction of e-station on their premises.

Three round tables in Blagoevgrad, Simitli and Sandanski are planned for the beginning of December. The rest of the meetings are planned for the spring of 2022. All interested parties could get instant information regarding dates, locations and other relevant information, at the E.VE.CR.I Local-e facebook page.

The main task of the project E.VE.CR.I is the creation of 50 easily and continuously accessible and convenient to use charging stations for electric cars, 25 on each side of the Greek-Bulgarian border. To be located in the four regions – Central Macedonia and Eastern Macedonia-Thrace in Greece and Southwestern and South Central Bulgaria – on the roads connecting Petrich and Sandanski with Serres, Gotse Delchev with Drama and Kavala, Smolyan and Zlatograd with Xanthi, Kardzhali with Komotini and Svilengrad with Alexandroupoli. Charging stations are expected to be installed in Alexandroupoli, Drama, Eleftheroupoli, Kavala, Kato Nevrokopi, Komotini, Orestias, Serres, Thessaloniki, Thassos, Xanthi, Bansko, Blagoevgrad, Dospat, Gotse Delchev, Kardzhali, Momchilgrad, Petrich, Sandanski, Smolyan, Svilengrad, Velingrad, Zlatograd as well as on the roads with smaller towns and villages between them.

The development and extension of electric cars network in the trans-border region has multiple benefits. Starting with improved energy efficiency, reduced greenhouse gas emissions affecting the air quality and quality of life, improving entrepreneurship in the cross-border area through sharing, partnership and mutual learning and creating a living network of promoters of electric mobility, be they small businesses or municipalities.

The project E.VE.CR.I Local-e comes as a sustainable response to the current situation. A key issue for electric vehicles adoption today is the lack of a continuously accessible, easy to use and widely spread network of charging points. In addition, for areas close to the border where many trips are to the neighbouring country, the facility of using the other country’s charging network is of primary importance. In Greece and Bulgaria, similarly to more advanced European countries, companies operating charging infrastructure are slowly taking ground.

E.VE.CR.I Local-e is initiated by the Alliance of the producers of ecological energy – BG (SPEE BG), the Centre for Research and Technology Hellas of the Hellenic Institute of Transport (Greece) and the Bulgarian Association of Electric Vehicles (BAEPS).

However, the cross-border region certainly has room for improvement. Murry Ivanov shared the example of a charging station in Marikostenovo (a village situated besides the Struma motorway, a few kilometres from the Bulgaria-Greece border) which struggles to keep up with the demand, especially during the summer holiday season. The reason is increased traffic from Central Europe – travellers from countries such as Germany and Austria where electric mobility is more prevalent – towards Greek resorts.