The Government has commenced with the second-round auction for the contract to supply the first 3,000 tricycles powered by electricity, the Energy department announced yesterday.
The electric tricycle (e-trike) project — a joint undertaking of the agency and Asian Development Bank (ADB) — aims to replace some 100,000 tricycles that run on gasoline by 2017.
The ADB allotted $300 million worth of funding for the $504-million project. The government will provide the remaining $99 million, and the Clean Technology Fund, $105 million.
“We are inviting interested bidders to join the renewed bidding process for the benefit not only of the electric transport industry, but of the ordinary Filipino citizens and tricycle drivers to enjoy an alternative mode of public transport,” said Energy Undersecretary Donato D. Marcos.
The deadline for bid submission is set on April 14, with a pre-bid conference on March 11.
The agency encourages all prospective bidders to participate in the pre-bid conference, which it said will serve to aid in meeting bid requirements on issues involving other regulatory agencies.
It added that the project targets participation from local government units (LGUs).
The first batch of e-trikes will be initially rolled out in the National Capital Region and Region IV.
“International competitive bidding will be conducted in accordance with ADB’s single stage, two-envelope procedure and is open to all eligible bidders from member-countries,” the formal invitation to bid states.
Bidders will be evaluated based on financial capability, experience and capacity to supply the project.
The Energy department further said that “the e-trike project aims to promote sustainable transport, address the increasing carbon emissions in major cities, and reduce oil dependence of the local transport sector.”
“The project also aims in transforming the public tricycle sector and jump-starting a new industry in the transport sector,” it added.
Last month, Mr. Marcos said the project has drawn strong interest from local and international investors even before it was officially rolled out.
Around 20 companies have indicated they may participate. Countries represented include Germany, the Czech Republic, China, Japan and Taiwan.
“The number is actually overwhelming and we hope the interest will convert into bids once we issue the documents,” the official said then.
The winning bidder for this round — which will be endorsed to the ADB before awarding — will be given three months to deliver the first 1,200 e-trikes and then the remaining 1,800 within six months.
This is the second time the government will attempt to move forward with the long-delayed e-trike project.
The first round held in August last year received offers from four foreign companies: Lirica Rising Sun and Shoyo-Terra Group (from Japan); Uzushio Electric Co. Ltd. (Japan); Eco One Co. (South Korea); and Teco Electric & Machinery Co. Ltd. (Taiwan).
However, the awarding did not materialize after the LGUs that were supposed to take the e-trike units failed to meet a “stringent requirement” of the Land Bank of the Philippines (Landbank).
An off-taker of the e-trike should have the “seal of good housekeeping” — a certification given by the Department of Interior and Local Government to recognize good governance among LGUs.
In order to secure the “seal of good housekeeping,” an LGU is judged based on a set of standards that include good planning, sound fiscal management, transparency and accountability.
The DoE, therefore decided to conduct another bid round to include Landbank-accredited cooperatives as possible off-takers of the e-trikes.