Initiative to develop EV ecosystem

Initiative to develop EV ecosystem

An electric vehicle charges at a charging station operated by the Metropolitan Electricity Authority. Patipat Janthong
An electric vehicle charges at a charging station operated by the Metropolitan Electricity Authority. Patipat Janthong

The state-run Metropolitan Electricity Authority (MEA) plans to provide discounts on the rate of electricity to electric vehicle (EV) charging service providers to make EV charging more widely available to the public.

The special rate is expected to be applied from Jan 1 next year, with building and land owners set to be the target group under a plan to increase the number of EV charging outlets, said Jaturong Suriyasasin, deputy governor of the MEA.

Participants will be given a wholesale price rate of electricity at 2.6 baht per kilowatt-hour (KWh) for two years. The price will then return to the regular rate in the third year.

The MEA's regular wholesale price has been set at 4.6 KWh for EV charging between 9am and 10pm. The rate decreases to 2.6 baht from 10pm to 9am the next day and during weekends.

The wholesale price is lower than the household price which is applied to motorists who charge their EVs at home. The charging rate is equal to the rate applied to other home appliances.

Property owners who join the discount scheme will independently set the retail prices, which will be the rate applied to the drivers.

They are required to follow conditions, including allowing all motorists -- including taxi drivers -- to use the service even though they do not live or work in their buildings.

Mr Jaturong expects the retail prices will be lower than a rate of 7.5 baht per KWh on average, which is currently being used by other EV charging service providers.

The MEA allocated a 30-million-baht budget for this scheme. It expects the scheme will help to bring about another 100 new charging outlets next year.

The move to increase EV charging facilities is in line with new EV assemblers who plan to launch EVs for taxi drivers at prices lower than 1 million baht, said Mr Jaturong.

In another development, Thai-Chinese joint venture SAIC Motor-CP and MG Sales (Thailand) joined hands with Bangchak Corporation Plc (BCP) to install fast charging outlets for EVs at BCP petrol stations.

Up to 100 charging outlets will be available this year and the number will increase to 500 next year, said BCP president Chaiwat Kovavisarach.

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