As the 18,000-euro grants promised to the first 500 buyers of fully electric cars have so far attracted only 20 applicants, the Ministry of Economic Affairs has said it is ready to re-channel the project funds.
The grants are funded by the state's sale of carbon credits to Mitsubishi Corboration last year and were written into the contract between the two parties.
Martin Miido, spokesman for the Ministry of Economic Affairs told uudised.err.ee, that if the funds are not used up for the project by the November 2012 deadline, the ministry will have to initiate negotiations with the company to rewrite the contract conditions.
The ministry has not yet decided on alternative use of the funds, said Miido, adding that none of the money will be lost upon changing the contract.
So far, customers have been discouraged from purchasing electric cars by high prices and lack of information about their performance in winter conditions.
Nevertheless KredEx, the state agency in charge of distributing the subsides, remains hopeful that the number of applicants will grow in spring when more zero-emission car models become available in Estonia. Currently, there are four models on the market, manufactured by Mitsubishi, Citroen, Peugeot and Valmet.