- history and founding of a Hong Kong NGO

Formation of on 25/1-2015

Charged.HK was conceived almost a year ago. Here is a brief history and current status:


It was in 1994 that the HK SAR introduced the initial exemption of “First Registration Tax” for electric private vehicles ("EV FRT Exemption"). Ever since, this exemption has been renewed multiple times. Last was March 2014, this time for a period of 3 years, to be reviewed by March 2017.

As EV (Electric Vehicle) technology is finally starting to catch up to fossi-fuel cars, the change is starting to take off - 20 years after the first exemption was passed. In Hong Kong, the group of EV owners is now growing outside of the early-mover stage into where ordinary citizens have started to replace their fossil-fuel cars with and EV.

Without a doubt, Tesla Motors have played an essential role in the development and deployment of EVs. And they most likely will keep doing so, for quite a while. In 2014, when the second generation of Tesla Motors EVs were introduced in Hong Kong, EV sales really took off. A 5-seat sedan, with ample performance, range and space took Hong Kong by storm. While dominating the market for EVs in HK, other brands are being more reasonably priced now compared to previously where the the HK market was a sort of “milking cow”. Some existing EVs were twice the price in Hong Kong, compared to other markets - mainly because the FRT exemption was abused to increase profits, rather than promote sales. Cheaper and better EVs are expected over the coming years and eventually the EV FRT exemption could be replaced by a pollution tax - to ensure continuous cleaner air quality in Hong Kong.

As of the end of 2015, the following notable auto makers have EVs on the roads of Hong Kong: BMW, BYD, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Renault, Smart, Tesla and VW. Add to that electric motorcycles, vans, trucks and buses.

Hopefully many more to come, with lower prices and increased range.


With this increase in EV sales, it was finally time to establish an NGO for uniting EV owners and drivers of Hong Kong. Out of the growing group of EV supporters in Hong Kong, 5 people got together to form Charged HK. At a venue in the Hong Kong Gold Coast Yacht and Country Club, about 25 electric cars and 70 persons met on January 25th, 2015. Amidst displaying EVs, having lunch and a lucky draw, the formal papers were signed to establish Charged HK, with the 5 founders as follows:

• Mark Webb-Johnson, Chairman
• Edwin Lee King-Yan, Vice-Chairman
• Core Lohse, Secretary
• Sony Wong Siu Keung, Treasurer
• Kristy Lau Kwan Yin, Membership

A Charged HK logo was set up for competition, and Ricky Sun's design was chosen, as the logo we have to this day. Pictures from the event:

Following the birth of Charged HK, several paperwork exercises had to be completed, in order to reach full non-profit, charitable status. This was achieved in October 2015, mainly due to the hard work of the chairman and other committee members.

Since its inception, the Charged HK committee has participated in and hosted several EV related events. This ranges from meet-ups and exhibitions, giving test rides during Drive Electric week 2015, into interacting with government and other regulatory bodies of Hong Kong.

Charged HK is representing the people of Hong Kong, with a mix of paying and non-paying members. Members are mainly EV owners, yet there are also EV drivers and even people who are just interested in the progress of transitioning from fossil-fuel cars to EVs..

Our main focus now is ensuring the Hong Kong charging infrastructure is built out fast enough to keep up with the increased amount of EVs in Hong Kong. We are also working on a sustainable and fair development of the EV FRT exemption, so that a gradual phasing out of this essential incentive happens in a way which is in the best interest of the people of Hong Kong.

With ongoing wind and solar power technology advances, we might even see Hong Kong becoming more or less self powered with electricity some day.

Join Charged HK to help fight for cleaner air for everyone!