Dispatch 241/2015 states that "the licensing of operational activities for charging points is thus simplified in order to stimulate the emergence, within a competitive environment, of new operators whether with national or local coverage."

This thus brings to an end the monopoly formerly attributed to Mobi.e, a consortium backed by Efacec, Inteli, CEIIA – CE and Novabase and represents the implementation of a commitment assumed by the government in April of last year.

The new legislation spans all of the authorisation necessary to undertaking electric vehicle battery charging and maintaining the respective infrastructures and ending what a Council of Ministers statement from April 2014 referred to as “the constraints on recharging” that had rendered the publicly backed network “inefficient.”

The current Mobi.e network contains over a thousand recharging posts in around 20 different councils with the government thus aiming to role this out nationwide in what the car industry perceives as a key step towards widespread take up of battery powered cars.

Whilst figures from ACAP – the Portuguese Automobile Association point to 145% and 285% growth in sales of electric powered cars and hybrids, the respective totals of 187 and 100 together represent but a drop in the overall car pool.

In Portugal, electric cars account for but 0.3% of sales with the country’s 4.5 million vehicles containing only 900 electric vehicle, 500 plug-in and 15,000 conventional hybrids.

Nevertheless, government plans themselves will significantly boost those figures with the Eco-Mob program foreseeing the state acquiring 1,200 electric powered vehicles through to 2020.