Maersk, a leading logistics company, has unveiled plans to significantly expand its electric vehicle (EV) fleet in India, targeting the growing demand for efficient last-mile distribution driven by the booming e-commerce sector. The recent announcement outlines the deployment of 500 compact EVs across 26 cities, catering to the diverse distribution requirements in the first, middle, and last segments of the supply chain.
Currently operating 200 electric vehicles in 15 cities, Maersk aims to more than double this count by October 2023. The company's existing fleet consists of a combination of electric tuktuks and small electric trucks, introduced in September 2022. Since then, the company has noted an increased awareness regarding the potential of EVs in supporting distribution logistics in India. This heightened awareness has translated into unprecedented demand from various customers seeking sustainable and efficient delivery solutions.
Vikash Agarwal, Maersk's Managing Director for South Asia, underlined the remarkable growth of the e-commerce sector in India and its continued potential for expansion. Agarwal emphasized Maersk's commitment to supporting this burgeoning market by scaling up its EV fleet.
The newly added electric vans offer varying payload capacities, ranging from 550 to 700 kilograms, and boast a remarkable range of over 120 kilometers. Jitendra Kapoor, Head of Middle Mile & Last Mile Distribution, highlighted the versatility of the expanded EV lineup, providing customers with tailored solutions that align with their specific business needs. Kapoor cited examples of these EVs being employed for tasks as diverse as delivering fresh ready-to-eat salads within the National Capital Region of Delhi and transporting groceries and lifestyle items across the country.
Maersk reported that its existing fleet of 200 EVs has collectively covered a distance exceeding 135,000 kilometers. However, the distribution ratio between e-tuktuks and e-trucks, as well as their respective deployment scenarios, remain undisclosed.
In support of its ambitious EV deployment plans, Maersk is also investing in the establishment of a comprehensive charging infrastructure for its EV fleet. Additionally, the company is exploring the integration of solar energy solutions to power its EVs, leveraging renewable resources available at its warehouses throughout India. Detailed specifics regarding these initiatives are yet to be revealed.
On a global scale, Maersk has set a formidable target of achieving net-zero emissions by the year 2040. As the company continues to make significant strides towards sustainability, its expanded EV fleet in India marks a substantial move towards reducing carbon footprint and contributing to cleaner logistics operations in the country.