Saturday , November 18 2017

Haunting ghost of Tesla – ‘Hard times ahead’

The late, Khamis Najm, teacher of English at the Al-Siddiq School in the mid-1950s was making fun of us (the students) and criticizing us because of our laziness and our neglectful attitude. He always said a day will come and Kuwait will run dry of oil and wondered what would happen to us then.

If this is what he wished for, his prayers were answered too late, but it came close to reality with every step taken by Tesla, the American electric car manufacturer, a revolution in the automotive industry in the strict sense of the word.

It is a vehicle that does not need maintenance and has a total of 18 pieces and that includes its four wheels, unlike the 18,000 needed to build a traditional car. The speed with which the work is being done on Tesla will have a catastrophic effect on dozens of activities, particularly on the prices of crude oil.

To illustrate the fact that Tesla is a threat to underdeveloped countries that have no resources other than oil as a sole source of income, I highlight the following facts.

Tesla was founded in 2003, yet its market value now stands at over $50 billion, while the Ford Motor Company, founded much before Tesla about 100 years ago, is worth $46 billion.

Ford produces about 7 million cars and Tesla in 2016 did not produce more than 70,000. However, is expected to increase production to a little more than hundred thousand this year. The secret is the future is bright!

Tesla’s strength does not lie only in its ability to manufacture a vehicle that does not require maintenance or fuel at all, but most of its models also do not need drivers. Its strength lies in the drive on the roads for more than 1.5 million kilometers and being clean environment friendly.

The experts predict that the production will adversely affect the oil prices. The price of a barrel in ten years will be half its price now. The car will put an end to all shale oil exploration activities, and in the seas and the oceans.

The traditional car companies will also suffer huge losses if they do not develop themselves. Detroit’s automobile cities will lose their prestige and cities like California will replace them.

Within a maximum of two years, it will be possible to travel in this vehicle for more than 300 kilometers by charging one battery and this will be the ‘turning point’ in the automation transport and industry, with the price of the electric car going down to $20,000 before 2022.

This will bring insurance companies huge losses due to lack of accidents caused by pilot-driven electric vehicles. The figures show that an equivalent of $10 trillion in revenue from Western governments will evaporate as a result of the impact of the auto industry and the oil transport industry.

Of course, we cannot expect vital countries such as China, India, Korea, Japan and others to stay away from the expected scenarios due to the collapse of oil prices, so we can take advantage of their alternative plans and from the current projects in parallel lines, as if the collapse is a mere mirage or a future reality.

The report is very pessimistic, and we can search in Google to know more about it, but in the meantime we must ask: What is the fate of the countries that depend on oil as the sole source of income? What are we going to do?

e-mail: habibi.enta1@gmail.com

By Ahmad Al-Sarraf

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