GCC unlikely to move to Euro IV as planned in 2017

Senior industry executive claims GCC standards body is lowering its Q3 2017 emissions targets for heavy goods vehicles to Euro III

The Gulf is looking to delay emissions standards that would force heavy goods vehicles to cut their emissions and visible black smoke.
The Gulf is looking to delay emissions standards that would force heavy goods vehicles to cut their emissions and visible black smoke.

A senior executive for a truck manufacturer that distributes in the Gulf region has reported that the GCC Standardization Organization (GSO) is not going to implement Euro IV emissions standards for heavy goods vehicles from September 2017.

The source claimed that the only country that would be ready for Euro VI by September 2017 is the UAE, where fuel with only 10ppm of sulphur content is already widely available.

In contrast, he noted that the other countries in the GCC are not ready, and are strongly opposing to raising emissions standards too rapidly due to the costs associated with Euro IV technology, which can add as much as 10% to the cost of a truck compared with Euro II.

While several Gulf countries, including Saudi Arabia, had previously set ambitious targets for the raising of emissions standards, the region’s priorities have changed rapidly in the wake of the low oil price, as well as the VW emissions scandal in Europe.

Euro III emissions standards were introduced in Europe in 2006. However, even the move to Euro III will be associated with significant costs in terms of the heavy-duty truck engine and fuel storage technology in the Gulf.

Euro II is presently the norm “because that is what the market requires,” said the executive. “Every emission class costs a lot of money in terms of technology, and the Euro II solution can basically eat as much as sulphur as there is: sulphur is always the killing factor.”

The source noted that as long as customers continue to request trucks models with the lowest permissible emission class, there will be little incentive to change from the manufacturer’s perspective.

However, he added that the move to lower the targets was still a little strange from the perspective of managing public perceptions, as “the big step from Euro III to Euro IV is that you don’t see any black smoke anymore.”

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