Shai Agassi's Better Place and the state of Hawaii signed a cooperation agreement on Tuesday to build an electric car network. Better Place hopes to have cars on the road by 2012, the company said in a statement. Hawaii spends as much as $7 billion per year to import oil, and cars produce 20 percent of its greenhouse gas emissions. "Attracting investments into the state is a major component of our Five-Point Action Plan to help stimulate the economy," Gov. Linda Lingle said in a statement. "Today's announcement is a significant move toward our state gaining independence from foreign oil. This public-private partnership is exactly the type of investment we have been working on as we continue to carry out our Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative, moving toward the goal of 70% clean energy for the state of Hawaii. It highlights the importance we place on finding innovative ways to attract investments in energy technology." To date, Better Place has partnered with Israel, Denmark, Australia and California.