In the development of Croatian entrepreneurship, of cities as well as the state, EU funds are also of great importance. Funds from EU funds enable participation in various European projects to implement a number of innovative solutions that contribute to higher quality of life, to the development of society and greater competitiveness of the state as a whole.
Hrvatski Telekom takes part in many of these projects as well, as a partner that continually helps Croatian cities and entrepreneurs to successfully withdraw funds from the European Union, offering them specific technical assistance, from suggesting relevant projects to drawing up the documentation itself.
One of the best examples of this synergy between Hrvatski Telekom on one side, and the state, cities and entrepreneurs, on the other side, is the project called “Comprehensive fast- charging corridor network in southeast Europe”.
This project is co-funded under the EU's Connecting Europe Facility (CEF or Instrument to connect Europe) program, and will enable the development of green corridors of e-mobility in Central and South-Eastern Europe, part of a wider global project for connecting countries from South East Europe. The purpose of the project is to provide top-of-the-line charging service for domestic EV users, as well as an increasing number of tourists who come to Croatia on holiday by electric vehicles. Apart from installation itself, the owners of the locations that decide to open an EV charging station will be helped by Hrvatski Telekom in getting EU funds.
The project is planned to open as many as 69 fast and 4 ultra fast EV charging stations at a total of 31 locations on corridors across Croatia and Romania. The project will last until the end of 2020 and its total value is 4.3 million euros.
As part of this project, Hrvatski Telekom has also set up a fast EV charging station at a recently opened revitalized ROX gas station. It is the eighth fast EV charging station set up by Hrvatski Telekom in Croatia, but it is important to note that it is also the first fast EV charging station in Croatia that allows charging of all types of electric vehicles which is placed on a classic gas station. Charging lasts only about 20 minutes, and the usage experience is fully digitized. The charging service is available around the clock and until further notice it is completely free of charge for all electric car users, and customer support via the Hrvatski Telekom‘s Call Center is also available.
"It is a great pleasure to introduce the first fast interoperable EV charging station at the ROX gas station in Zagreb. As a company that has been successfully operating more than 25 years in the distribution of petroleum products in Croatia and the rest of the region, we want to be an example and raise awareness of the delivery of cleaner energy-generating products and services. We are glad that Hrvatski Telekom has recognized us as an ideal partner for such am important project. We hope that the revitalized ROX petrol station with a fast EV charging station will serve as an example for other gas station chains and raise awareness of the importance of increasing electricity in traffic, as the most environmentally friendly solution,” said CEO of ROX d.o.o. Ivo Krištić.
With this latest EV charging station, Hrvatski Telekom has so far with partners installed more than 120 publicly available EV charging stations in more than 75 cities throughout Croatia, making up more than 50 percent of publicly available EV charging stations in Croatia. Thanks to this, the Puni.hr network today is the largest regional grid of EV charging stations.
As the trend of buying electric vehicles is steadily rising, the electric car charging service allows investors, who want to expand their offer, to be more competitive. In addition, the availability of such a technologically advanced service is an additional incentive for the arrival of an increasing number of tourists from the European Union, in particular those with higher incomes, which contributes to the development of tourism.
The project to build an EV charging station network significantly contributes to the preservation of the environment as it encourages an increasing number of drivers to use electric vehicles, thereby directly reducing the emission of harmful gases. All of that is a step towards building a sustainable environment, an environment with cleaner air, and hence healthier and better-quality life.
Referring to the project itself, Jerko Dumanić, Director of Business Marketing Sector of Hrvatski Telekom, pointed out: “It is a great pleasure for us to have the opportunity to take part in such important projects with our innovative solutions and to be a catalyst for positive changes not only at the economy level but also in society as a whole. We are also pleased that ROX was the first in Croatia to recognize the new trends and got involved in this EU funded project, which contributes to Croatia's competitiveness.”
In addition to the existing 120 publicly available charging stations in over 75 cities, setting up the first interoperable fast EV charging station at ROX gas station and securing funds for project implementation through EU funds, Hrvatski Telekom confirmed its leading position in e-mobility in the domestic market and of the most important partner to entrepreneurs in applying smart EU funded solutions. The project contributes to the fulfillment of the Europe 2020 Strategy objectives and in addition to the traditional workplaces required for the development and maintenance of the charging network, it encourages employment in the IT system and digital services segment.
New fast EV charging stations of Hrvatski Telekom will soon be set up at locations in Karlovac, Delnice, Rijeka, Zagreb and Varaždin.