Date: July 18, 2019
Southeast Asia has among the highest number of motorized 2-wheelers per capita in the world, and a vast fleet of 3-wheelers such as tuk-tuks and tricycles in Thailand and the Philippines. However, progress in improving transport-system integration and the sustainability of the region’s 2&3-wheelers has been elusive.
Addressing the issues, the Electric Vehicle Association of Thailand organized a special session at the International Electric Vehicle Technology (iEVTech) Conference in Bangkok in early June, during which participants agreed to place greater emphasis on standardization efforts for electric 2&3-wheelers.
Planning continued at the 7th Philippine EV Summit held on July 17-18 during a roundtable discussion on “Prospects for ASEAN Electric 2&3-Wheeler Standardization” organized by Clean Air Asia and UN Environment to support the efforts of ASEAN EV Associations. UN Environment is implementing the global project “Integrating Electric 2&3-Wheelers into Existing Urban Transport Modes in Developing and Transitional Countries”, supported by the International Climate Initiative.
Thirty-seven representatives from ASEAN member countries, EV associations, non-governmental organizations and academia took part in the roundtable discussion.
Providing background on standardization efforts in the ASEAN region, UN Environment Programme Officer Bert Fabian said while standards or guidelines were being set for light-duty electric vehicles, discussion needed to continue as 2&3-wheelers – the predominant vehicle modes in the ASEAN region – tended to be underprioritized. He said UN Environment was working towards the integration of 2&3-wheelers in urban traffic in the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.
The EV associations represented at the meeting agreed that such policy guidelines would assist ASEAN member countries in developing their own standards and policies, particularly given that a growing number of electric 2&3-wheelers were being imported.
Dr Horizon Gitano from Focus Applied Technologies of Malaysia said the aim of policy guidelines for electric 2&3-wheelers could be agreement on minimum performance standards for electric motors, batteries, and the design of such modes.
Together with ASEAN EV associations, and with support from UN Environment, an initial draft of policy guidelines is planned for the first half of 2020 and communicated to all ASEAN member countries.