Electric jeepneys cheaper to own, operate than diesel jeepneys: MPIC’s Pangilinan

Jessica Fenol, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 19 2022 02:43 PM

MANILA - Metro Pacific Investments Corp chairman Manny Pangilinan said on Wednesday that electric jeepneys are now cheaper to operate than traditional jeepneys that use diesel. 

Pangilinan said MPIC invested in former Grab Philippines head Brian Cu's electronic vehicle startup Byahe in an attempt to drive the shift to greener energy. 

Byahe is a company focused on public utility vehicle solutions using modern jeepneys and electric vehicles. 

"Because of the tremendous increase in prices of petrol, of gas and oil... it is now cheaper for jeepney operators for jeepney owners to own and operate e-jeep than the traditional fossil fuel," Pangilinan said citing estimates from Byahe.

"The capital cost is higher for e-vehicles but the operating cost is much lower...I do hope that Byahe can start that momentum towards that shift," he added.

Meralco's support, Pangilinan said, is needed in terms of putting up a network of charging stations in order for e-jeepneys to take off.

"I think Meralco should lead the charge in terms of the shift in e-vehicles because they are probably in the best position to provide a network of charging stations in this country as the biggest seller of power in the country...Meralco has got to transition, the supply chain has to change," he said. 

The Philippine government has also been pushing for the use of modern jeepney under its jeepney modernization program but drivers and operators have criticized the high capital costs.

The businessman also called for an energy "transition plan" since a number of power plants are getting old while solar or wind energy are not enough to supply the demand.

"The country now needs base load capacity, the margin of supply to demand is very thin...Solar does not give you that base load, if you add batteries to the equation they do but that’s very expensive. You have to look at a transition plan," he said. 

"The consumers of power and fuel, petrol for your cars, the consumers of those must demand that the power supply must shift towards the green side of things," he added.


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