PLN Boosting Electric Car Infrastructure
State-owned electricity firm Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN) on Monday said it had built two recharging stations for electric cars, and was set to build more in order to support the development of electric cars in the country. PLN said the first two recharging stations were built in Yogyakarta to support the operation of electric minibus Hevina, which was developed by the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI).
“We built one in Taman Pintar and another one in Yogyakarta’s Giwangan bus Terminal,” the head of PLN’s Research and Development Center, Saftri Falani, said on the sidelines of the bus launch. She added that PLN had also developed electric car prototypes to test the recharging stations.
“PLN doesn’t want to develop electric cars, though. We don’t intend to sell cars. Our business is in the recharging stations,” Saftri stated. She added that this year, PLN would focus on developing a business model for the recharging stations, which they aim to have several of by 2015.
The Indonesian government last year stepped up its support for the development of “low-cost green cars,” which include electric cars. The State Ministry for Research and Technology alone earmarked Rp 100 billion ($9.98 million) for the development of such cars by four state universities.
The ministry has also given LIPI Rp 1.2 trillion to develop electric vehicles, including the Hevina, which can carry up to 16 people and is intended to serve visitors of Yogyakarta’s Taman Pintar theme park. Research and Technology Minister Gusti Muhammad Hatta stated that his ministry has also developed its own electric minibus, two electric sedans and several electric golf cars.
“The ministry will keep developing electric vehicles. We already have a road map for their development. We’ll keep getting better every year,” Gusti said. Indonesia-based firm Great Asia Link (Grain) said in February that it was planning to commence operations of the country’s first electric car plant in the East Java town of Gresik in May. The factory, Grain said, has an annual production capacity of 20,000 units.