News Article commercial property electric cars Europe EV charging investment Poland Savills
by Property Forum | Investment

The latest report from Savills indicates that the highest demand for electric vehicle charging points is observed in Germany, France, Sweden, Norway, and the United Kingdom. Poland ranks in the top twenty countries with the highest growth potential for the development of EV charging infrastructure, presenting opportunities for commercial property owners and investors active in this market.

Savills says that these five countries account for 77% of the European chargers that will be needed in the next two years. For Germany, the UK and France, this is due to their large populations and high future EV demand which outstrips existing charging infrastructure, while Norway and Sweden have low existing charging infrastructure but the number of EVs per inhabitant is already comparatively high.

According to Savills, this presents an opportunity for real estate landlords and investors to partner with private charging point operator companies (CPOs) or others to install EV infrastructure, which they can receive rental income from and/or use to increase footfall and dwell time to nearby assets, increasing income returns. Generally, CPOs will incur the cost of set-up and, while location-dependent, landlords could expect to see rental income of between €1,000 to €5,000 per charger per annum for a 20-25 year lease length.

Tristam Larder, Head of European Capital Markets at Savills, says: “With fiscal support in many countries acting as a carrot and environmental legislation as a stick, consumer demand for EVs across Europe is heading in only one direction. With many EV users not having access to home charging points, public infrastructure provision is essential. Many landlords have significant volumes of car parking spaces that could be suitable for installation, so this is an opportunity to monetise an asset that is largely underutilised while simultaneously strengthening potential revenue to other facilities via partnerships with CPOs.”

Poland ranks fourteenth in the list of countries with the highest potential for the development of EV charging stations in Europe. The saturation rate of charging points in the report, calculated by dividing the number of electric vehicles (EV) by the number of chargers, is below the European average for Poland, which stands at 18 electric vehicles per charger. According to the European Union, the optimal saturation ratio is 10 electric vehicles per public charger. Despite the relatively undeveloped network of chargers, Poland ranks third in Europe in terms of access to fast DC chargers. There are four different types of chargers, with two types of current. AC chargers are the most common type of public charger, while DC charging points account for only 11% of the total number of chargers in Europe, compared to 24% in Poland, with only Romania (28%) and Norway (27%) having more.

Michał Bryszewski, Board Member, Head of Property & Asset Management, Savills Poland, comments: "As indicated by the latest Savills European EV Supercharging: the turning point report, in Poland, the demand for EV charging points is expected to exceed 10,700 chargers within the next year. The infrastructure in our country is relatively young, as evidenced by the high ratio of DC chargers, which in most European countries have not yet been implemented on as wide a scale as AC chargers. The dynamic growth of this market segment clearly shows that low and zero-emission standards are the direction in which our country will also be heading. To achieve this, it is necessary to urgently introduce regulatory changes related to connection issues, affecting not only the energy sector but also the owners and managers of commercial properties. We are currently observing some delays in the decision-making process from companies responsible for issuing permits and constructing energy network connections to charging stations. Network operators are currently reporting an extension of the decision-making time by up to six months, which significantly delays the investment process. Streamlining these processes will be key to further development of this industry and all parties involved in the energy transformation process."

Bobby Barfoot, Senior Surveyor in Savills Automotive team, comments: “With the ban of new diesel and petrol vehicles set for 2035 most vehicle manufacturers and the companies in their supply chains have committed billions of investment, whether in pounds or Euros, into the transition to electrification of vehicles. The industry is now desperate for the infrastructure to be put in place to support the transition, and is eager to support initiatives that see landlords rewarded to install charging networks on their sites.”

Lydia Brissy, Director in Savills European research team, adds: “All the major European countries need a massive growth in the supply of EV charging points in the next decade, although it’s clear from our analysis that the biggest initial opportunity for landlords lies in the countries at the top of our ranking: Germany, France, Sweden, Norway and the UK. There are challenges to overcome, however, namely grid capacity and the large upfront cost of grid reinforcement and connection, but by working together we believe that CPOs and landlords can share the risks and also the potentially large returns available.”