Applications for loans to finance electric vehicles and rooftop solar systems are coming in thick and fast, according to big-four bank NAB, as Australian businesses race to cut costs and emissions.
NAB says new data shows finance for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles is up 900 per cent since 2020 – albeit from a very low base, considering Australia’s notoriously behind-the-pace EV market.
Perhaps more tellingly, NAB says finance for solar assets has increased by 600% over the same period, as PV generation becomes a no-brainer for any business with the space to install panels.
NAB group executive, business and private banking, Andrew Irvine, says soaring electricity and fuel prices are driving business owners to invest in a more sustainable future, both to meet their own climate and sustainability targets, and to reduce operating costs.
“Right across the country, we’re seeing investments in everything from solar panels to electric cars to sustainable on-farm practices and technologies that reduce costs, reduce carbon emissions and importantly, build resilience to climate change,” Irvine says.
“Our customers know there are significant economic and environmental opportunities in reducing their carbon footprint, with 43% of businesses telling us they either have in place or plan to develop a net zero carbon emissions plan” – up 13% on 2021 numbers, says Irvine.
“Our role is to support our customers and communities through the transition and fund the investments needed to create a strong and sustainable future.”
NAB is leaning in to this role with the launch this week of its new Agri Green Loan, which offers finance for agribusinesses to invest in eligible on-farm practices and technologies.
NAB’s existing electric vehicle online fixed rate is from 6.99% per annum, the bank says.