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The Government’s push to electric is a ‘futile’ exercise while we continue to run a parallel policy encouraging used imports through lower taxation, it is claimed.

“We are not just importing their dirty diesels, we are importing their CO2 emissions,” Nissan Ireland’s chief executive James McCarthy warned.

“Economics, not the environment, drive most consumer behaviours.

“If it is cheaper to buy a heavily polluting used import than a newer, cleaner car, the consumer will follow the money.”

He claimed if the Government is serious about tackling the problem of climate change it must address this.

“Otherwise announcements about having a million EVs on our roads by 2030 are no more than virtue-signalling.”

We can’t get rid of the 250,000 ‘non-compliant’ cars imported over the past few years but, Mr McCarthy believes, we can stop doing further damage by ensuring imports are fit for purpose.

On another front, he described to ‘Motors’ as “incredibly unambitious” Government plans to double the number of public EV chargers by 2025. “The number of public EV chargers needs to double in the next six to 12 months, not in five years,” he said.

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