Despite difficulties, the Department of Energy (DoE) remains determined to distribute the 3,000 electric tricycles (e-trikes) still in its possession, one of its officials said.
According to Energy Assistant Secretary Leonido Pulido 3rd, the department seeks to ease these difficulties—including the vehicle’s price and flawed deployment model, which he calls “restrictive”—by opening doors to potential offtakers other than local government units (LGUs).
It also seeks to expand the e-trike program into several other deployment models.
The DoE already “reached out to various potential stakeholders” to deploy the e-trikes under its care until June. It also considering distributing a maximum of 150 tricycles to war-torn Marawi City.
“[W]hile we’re reaching out and talking to potential operators, both in the public and private sector, we are commissioning and testing the units with [Bemac Electric Transportation Philippines],” Pulido said.
In 2016, Japan’s Uzushio Electric Co. Ltd. and local partner Bemac won the contract to deliver the first batch of e-tricycles under the joint undertaking of the Energy department and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), which began during the Aquino administration.
The DoE got a $500-million, five-year loan from the ADB to fund the program, which aimed to deploy 100,000 e-trikes.
But Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi suspended the loan in November because the project was not economically viable, citing design flaws and high cost.
Despite that, the government still acquired the 3,000 e-trikes because the previous administration had signed for contract on this.
Recently, Cusi and Pulido met with ADB officials to discuss the program, its design and procurement guidelines.
The Energy chief had asked for a team of representatives from DoE, ADB, the Department of Finance, and National Economic and Development Authority to review the initiative.
“We’ve spent the last 10 months revising the project administration manual, as well as the loan agreement between DoF and ADB,” Pulido said.
When asked whether the department intends to revive funding later on, the official replied that they need distribute all the e-trikes by end-June “before we could proceed.”
Lagareon, J. S. (January 8, 2018). DoE keen to deploy e-trikes – senior exec. Manila Times. Retrieved from http://www.manilatimes.net/doe-keen-deploy-e-trikes-senior-exec/372911/