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KPMG Report: Netherlands Most Prepared for the Driverless Revolution

Author: Michael Cheng   

How ready are countries around the world for the autonomous driving era? 

According to Klynveld Peat Marwick Goerdeler (KPMG), a ‘top four' international consulting and auditing firm, most advanced countries are just about there, with the Netherlands leading the way as the most prepared location for autonomous vehicles.

The consulting giant leveraged the Automated Vehicles Readiness Index (AVRI) to arrive at this conclusion, which it crafted and published in a report earlier this month. The assessment included over 20 countries, pegged against a set of standards used to gauge the location's capabilities in catering to self-driving cars.

AVRI Criteria and Pillars

The AVRI focuses on the following four categories: legislation, technological innovation (includes patents and investments), infrastructure (includes 4G coverage and density of EV charging stations) and consumer acceptance. It is important to highlight that countries can score high in one pillar and extremely low in another. A great example of this is the UAE, which captured the number eight spot. Impressively, the country ranked number one in the road quality category.

However, when it comes to legislation, KPMG researchers placed the UAE at number six, as the country has established an autonomous program within its local transportation department.

"The UAE's desire to excel in the field of technology-led innovation, which it overlays on its existing ‘hard' infrastructure will ensure that the nation is at the vanguard of the urban autonomous mobility," said Ravi Suri, partner and global head of infrastructure finance at KPMG Lower Gulf, in a statement.

Rankings

So how did the Netherlands receive the highly coveted top spot in the AVRI?

Taking a closer look at the index, the country ranked first in the infrastructure category. Moreover, the Netherlands placed second in consumer acceptance, third in legislation and fourth in technological innovation. In total, it received an aggregated score of 27.23 points.

"The Netherlands provides an AV readiness model for other countries to follow, with excellent road infrastructure, a highly supportive government and enthusiastic adoption of electric vehicles," highlighted KPMG in its report.

The country currently has 10 EV charging stations per 100 kilometers of roadway, which helped it rank first in this category. China and the United Kingdom came close, with roughly three EV charging hubs per 100 kilometers of roadway.

Other countries performed considerably well in the AVRI. Singapore took second place – with an aggregated score of 26.08 points, due to its lax regulatory programs for autonomous vehicles (it ranked first in this category, as well as in the aspect of consumer acceptance).

Additionally, the country has been very open to conducting driverless trials in both closed test tracks and public locations. The US was given the third spot, followed by Sweden and the United Kingdom. In the technological innovation category, the US placed first, with Sweden and Germany not far behind.

New Zealand managed to make it in the top ten, even though the country's autonomous driving program has been slow to take off. The participating location beat the Netherlands in the legislation category, at second place.

Michael Cheng
Michael Cheng is a legal editor and technical writer with publications for Blackberry ISHN Magazine Houzz and Payment Week. He specializes in technology business and digesting hard data. Outside of work Michael likes to train for marathons spend time with his daughter and explore new places.
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