The Department of Energy is looking to complete the stalled rollout of the 3,000 electricity tricycles (e-trike) by the middle of the year where a part will be deployed to Marawi City.
“We are currently doing the commissioning and testing for the units with BEMAC, the Japanese supplier,” DOE assistant secretary Leonido Pulido said. “We have until June 2018 to fully deploy the 3,000 units.”
He said that the agency is testing the e-trikes, which is a joint effort of the government with the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
It was BEMAC Electric Transportation Philippines Inc. who bagged the $30-million contract back in 2016 to produce 3,000 e-trikes. However, these units have remained in the warehouse because of lack of takers from local governments (LGUs) due to its price – P450,000 per unit.
The government has been working with the ADB to modify the e-trike deployment restricting it only LGU distribution.
“We spent the last 10 months revising the project administration manual as well as the loan agreement between the DOF (Department of Finance) and ADB. In those revisions, the objective was really to free up the restrictions,” Pulido said.
“First restriction is that only LGUs are the potential offtakers. We removed that. And then, there was a single deployment method, we’ve removed that and, instead, expanded it to several other deployment models,” he added.
DOE is looking to deploy around a hundred e-trikes to Marawi City. Pulido said that these will not require charging stations since these can be charged at home.
“We intend to deploy between 100 to 150 units to Marawi as part of the livelihood program,” he said.
The “Market Transformation through Introduction of Energy Efficient Electric Vehicles (E-trikes) project” was signed by ADB and government in 2013.
ADB will provide the loan for the e-trike production of around P21.67 billion, and covered the delivery of 100,000 e-trike units.
3,000 of the 10,000 units will be distributed to LGUs in Metro Manila, Region 4-A and Region 4-B to jumpstart the shift to e-vehicles to cut down the country’s fuel imports and lessen carbon dioxide emissions.
However, the high prices resulted to zero takers for the e-trikes and DOE was called out the Commission on Audit (COA) on its failure to distribute a single unit of the e-trikes to the intended beneficiaries.
Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi ordered the cancelation of the next production of e-trikes and sought to amend the loan agreement with the ADB to be able to rollout the 3,000 e-trikes.