Q&A: Climate leaders with answers

Kenneth Ukpabia is the CEO of Orbit Electric. The two-year-old company supports electric last-mile logistics in Nigeria.

Q: What set you on your path? The Nigerian government removed fuel subsidies, and petrol prices skyrocketed. That inspired me to start an EV company.

Q: Are many others doing what you do? A: Two-wheeler competition is still low. More than 250 million Nigerians need mobility solutions. We stand out as we focus on selling delivery bikes. And we’ll soon reduce our price from $1,300 to $1,000.

Q: Will Nigeria be an EV mecca? A: We’re still at an infant stage, trying to create awareness about sustainable transport. 

Q: Do misconceptions hinder progress? A: People complain about high EV capital costs. They overlook the long-term benefits of not having to buy fossil fuel. 

Q: Is the government helping? A: Charging infrastructure is built by the private sector. But the government is finalising laws to reduce taxes in order to promote EV adoption. And federal states have acquired EVs to aid in public transport. 

Q: Is it easy importing ebike parts from Asia and assembling them in Nigeria? A: Delivery is always smooth. China is cheap and has good quality. And India is coming up.

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