Sunday 19 May 2024
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PUTRAJAYA (March 27): Datuk Abdul Razib Dawood, chief executive officer of the Energy Commission (ST), revealed that ST is currently in talks with the government to give condominium owners an exemption from having a distributor licence to install electric vehicle charging bays (EVCB).

Abdul Razib told The Edge ESG (environmental, social, and governance) during a media briefing that they are preparing a paper for the Ministry of Energy Transition and Water Transformation to waive the distributor licence requirement for installing alternative current slow chargers for condominiums and flats.

This action addresses the issue that charging point operators (CPOs) and residential building owners face when installing EVCBs for places like high-rise buildings, due to recent requirements for EVCBs to have a separate Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) electricity meter, and thus, a retailer licence.

This is a step the ST is taking to speed up the application process for CPOs to get their EVCBs licensed by the ST. Abdul Razib said that they are continuously looking for ways to improve the process which CPOs have called cumbersome, while not compromising on safety.

The Edge ESG covered this issue in February and highlighted that most public EV chargers in Malaysia were still unlicensed despite the ST’s deadline to do so by March 2023.

CPOs complained that the application process is long, especially with the new requirement introduced last December for each charging site to have its own TNB electricity meter and ST public distribution licence.

In addition to the exemption, the ST said that it has also revised its application and approval process, and introduced a new strategy to reduce the number of days for licence approval. 

“[In] the previous process, [CPOs] had to go through two committees, which were the board’s sub-committee, then go to the full board meeting for each application,” said Abdul Razib.

He said that the new process goes through a single delegated management committee, which meets once every two weeks, to once a month for approval. 

Thanks to this, the licensing application process has seen a significant increase in speed, he said, going from 60 working days, down to 20- to 30 working days.

Abdul Razib said the ST is also engaging the CPOs and educating them on the documents that have to be submitted as part of the application process.
No more excuse for CPOs to remain unlicensed.

Thanks to these changes and the incident of the unlicensed charging station in Johor Bahru catching fire in January, Abdul Razib mentioned that most CPOs have already applied for the licence. Those who have not (applied for the licence) are getting their documents in order, as their EVCBs were only installed shortly before the deadline was set.

Abdul Razib noted that for the remaining unlicensed EVCBs, “currently we are practising enforcement because of the issue that these EVCBs are unmanned
operations; so, it is quite difficult to educate players when there’s nobody there”.

In addition to the steps ST have taken to expedite the application process, Abdul Razib made it clear that there will be no more grace period for CPOs, advising them to get their documents in order and apply for their charging point licence in bulk, so that the ST can go through them quicker.

To ensure further collaboration and for a smooth process, ST has been having regular meetings with the CPOs once every two weeks to address any issues the CPOs have, be it gathering the necessary documents or how to further streamline the process without compromising safety.

“We always discussed roadblocks (and red tape),” said Abdul Razib. 

“We meet (every two weeks) to process the EV charging licence,” he added.

As a result of these meetings, the ST said that 400 EVCBs nationwide are licensed, and Abdul Razib remains optimistic about Malaysia reaching its goals. According to the ST’s website, as at March 27, there are 273 EV charging system licensees (a licensee can have more than one charger in a location).

“As far as the task force is concerned, we are still on track to achieve 10,000 (EVCBs by 2025),” said Abdul Razib.

Edited ByTan Zhai Yun
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