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LS Industrial looking to introduce smart grid technology

A Korean company is mulling to introduce a smart grid technology to the Philippines’ power distribution sector and participate in the development of the nascent electric vehicle industry, a government official said Monday.

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary Cristino Panlilio said LS Group officials led by their chairman John Koo, a member of the founding family of the LG Group, recently spoke to him and other officials of the DTI to discuss the possibility of cooperating with Manila Electric Company (Meralco) in the development of a smart grid in the country.

This technology is envisioned to lead to, among others, more efficient demand-side management of power, zero incidence of overloading and tripping, bi-direction of energy flows and provide room for the progressive introduction of renewable energy into the grid, he said.

The LS Group is a spin-off of the giant LG conglomerate and itself is the 13th largest business group in Korea today.

The group is Korea’s leading supplier of a wide range of products, solutions and services in the field of cable, electric power and automation solution and energy. Its consolidated revenues in 2011 registered US$25 billion, and it currently maintains over 100 subsidiaries, with operations in 52 countries.

Through its subsidiary, LS Industrial Systems, the LS Group offers integrated technologies and services on electric vehicle (EV) components and charging infrastructure.

The company, which supplies EV components to Renault, GM, Ford, Volkswagen and Hyundai, also made a presentation on viable EV charging infrastructure models at the recently concluded 2nd Electric Vehicle Summit in the country.

At present, small independent players in the country are engaged in the conversion and assembly of electric jeepneys and electric tricycles. The interests and initiatives on electronic vehicles have become widespread as more countries seek to curb dependence on oil consumption and reduce air pollution.

The DTI, through its commercial offices in East Asia, recently organized an inbound mission of electric vehicle manufacturers from South Korea, Japan and Taiwan to establish technical and business partnership with Filipino vehicle fabricators and assemblers.

Aside from the LS Group, Commercial Counselor Nic Bautista, who heads the Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Seoul, also brought in officials of S&T Motiv, formerly a subsidiary of the Daewoo Group. S&T Motiv is a major manufacturer of electric motorcycles and EV components.

“With the technical knowhow of our foreign partners, the prospect for the Philippine electric vehicle industry is huge since we have talented and competitive workforce, and the manufacturing capacity and capability,” Panlilio said.

He also said the passage of the bill related to alternative fuel-powered automobiles would ensure production and trade of electric vehicles viable in the country. This bill provides fiscal incentive such as exemption from import duties and excise tax, and Board of Investment incentives.

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