Even with 1,600 units already manufactured, the Energy Department (DOE) has decided to stop the roll-out of the electric tricycle project due to lack of interested buyers and expensive manufacturing costs.
“The DOE already decided that we will discontinue the e-trike project,” Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi told The Standard, talking about the Asian Development Bank-funded project worth $500 million aimed to replace 100,000 gasoline-fired tricycle units with electric vehicles.
Even with almost 2, 000 units manufactured, DOE wants to stop production of the remaining units.
“We sent a letter to stop the production of the additional units. The meeting with NEDA [National Economic Development Authority] as of the moment is ongoing and I am also waiting for an update,” Cusi said.
The energy secretary added that they are studying how to manage the roll-out of the 3,000 e-trikes approved by the Aquino administration and awarded to a Japanese company.
Uzushio Electric Co. Ltd. of Japan and local partner Bemac Electric Transportation Philippines Inc. were issued a notice of award from the Aquino administration for the supply of 3,000 units of e-trikes.
“Based on the contract, DOE can also cancel the delivery of the e-trike bid out. However, the contractor has 28 days within which to deliver whatever they produce and DOE will be obliged to pay whatever is delivered,” Cusi said.
Cusi said before that the e-trike project will be too expensive.
“The problem is affordability of the operators. If there will be takers, we will continue to promote that…How do we make it affordable?” Cusi said.
DOE bit out an initial supply and delivery of 3,000 e-trikes back in 2014.
Financed by ADB and the Clean Technology Fund, the project was meant to run for five years.
The said project aims to deploy 100,000 e-trikes across the country in replacement of gas tricycles, to reduce the transportation sector’s petroleum consumption by 2.8 percent (89.3 million liters) annually and avoid carbon dioxide footprint avoidance.