Power retailer Manila Electric Co. is looking at investment opportunities in the electric vehicle manufacturing or assembly as a part of a long-term growth plans in the EV space, officials said.
Meralco subsidiary eSakay Inc. launched on Friday its EV fleet that would soon ply one of Metro Manila’s busiest commuting routes between the cities of Makati and Mandaluyong.
Meralco chairman Manuel Pangilinan said investing in the assembly of e-Sakay jeepneys could be an option for Meralco
“We might invest…We don’t know yet which arm of Meralco,” Pangilinan said, adding he was hoping the designer and distributor of the e-jeepneys could manufacture it in the Philippines.
E-Sakay’s modern e-jeeps are 100-percent electric and emission free and compliant with PUV innovations for the convenience and safety of the riding public. They are equipped with side entrances, onboard Wi-Fi, an automated fare collection system, GPS tracking system, CCTV cameras, USB ports so passengers can charge their phones while traveling and others.
Meralco tapped Star 8 Green Technology Corp. to supply the e-jeep units.
E-Sakay chairman and Meralco senior vice president and head of customer retail services, corporate marketing and communications Al Panlilio said the company was studying how to promote EVs in the country.
“We should be able to build the charging station. The question is for you to propagate this you need supply of e-vehicles from tricycles, e-jeeps, e-bus and eventually private cars. Is there a way we can manufacture here?” Panlilio said.
“So we have not started since we have a supplier at Star 8 and they are not the only ones… How can we develop that space? How can we bring their manufacturing capability here in the Philippines. That’s what we are still discussing,” he said.
E-Sakay, incorporated in 2018, applied for and received provisional authority to operate 15 e-jeeps for the Buendia MRT Station-Mandaluyong City hall via Jupiter St. developmental route.
“Meralco has long been an advocate for the wider use of electric vehicles in the country with the EV shuttling service and electric bike sharing program at the Meralco Center in Ortigas. It soon became clear to us that electric vehicles were indeed a viable transport solution. That’s when we partnered with private companies, government institutions and now, public transport operators who expressed keen interest in utilizing EVs for their transport needs,” said Panlilio