On April 30, 2021, Indonesian ride-hailing startup Gojek announced an incredibly ambitious plan called the Three Zeros. By the year 2030, the company defines its goals as achieving zero emissions, zero waste, and zero barriers. To do this, it says it plans to transition its entire rider and driver fleet—all two- and four-wheeled vehicles—to by the end of the decade. 

The company issued its first-ever Annual Sustainability Report for 2020 at the end of April, 2021. In the section about accelerating the company’s transition to EVs, the very first sentence is, “an increase in Electric Vehicle (EV) adoption means reduced and improved air quality.” Given that both local and international concern about Indonesia’s air quality has been mounting for years, those seem like very sound reasons to push the issue. 

To reach these goals, Gojek says that it’s been conducting feasibility studies and pilot projects, in partnership with several major companies in the country. These include well-known vehicle manufacturers Astra Honda Motor, Toyota, Mitsubishi, and NIU. Areas addressed include total cost of ownership, EV performance concerns, and development of charging and battery swapping infrastructure across the country.  

Work is underway to meet its 2030 goals, but in an interview with CNBC, Gojek co-CEO Kevin Aluwi said that Gojek is encouraging other Indonesian companies to get on board, collaborate, and compete in this space. Furthermore, he said, Gojek will be putting plenty of its own money where its mouth is to develop these solutions, but they’re under no delusions that they can accomplish this task alone.  

Still, the fact that Gojek is making and perhaps even leading this effort is pretty promising. The company is a massive presence in Indonesia, and also operates in Thailand, Vietnam, and Singapore. If the company succeeds in hitting its 2030 EV transition deadline across all those countries, it should have significant effects on the transportation ecosystems everywhere it operates.  

Setting goals is great, but time will tell if Gojek—and hopefully, the other companies it inspires to hop aboard the EV train—can make it happen. What kinds of ripple effects will we see from this action, if any? We’ll just have to wait and see.  

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