Electric car charging station bids sought

The Electric Power Corporation (E.P.C.) has invited interested bidders to supply charging stations for electric vehicles.

The Acting General Manager of E.P.C., Fui Mau Simanu last month said that the Corporation was seeking interested bidders on behalf of the entire Government. 

“All bids must observe the bidding process and specification(s),” read the statement.

The news comes after the Government has been seeking to encourage the adoption of electrically powered vehicles as part of its bid to transition to a zero-emissions economy. 

Under a bill before Parliament, electric cars, such as those made popular by the manufacturer Tesla, would be able to be imported free of duty tax and excise taxes.

Under the Government’s plans, excises and duties will be waived for the next two years for electric-powered cars, but the taxes will apply to the parts of the said vehicles.

But the proposed law would also have an effect on charging stations. Eligible energy saving items such as plant, equipment and machinery can be determined waiver-free by the relevant Minister as he sees fit. 

The Corporation’s invitation to bidders states that bidders should seek out an opportunity to inspect the bid documents and specifications in person. 

Alternatively, interested bidders can download the bidding document from the E.P.C.’s website.

The tender will close on Tuesday 24th November 2020 at 11am, by which time all bids must be deposited in the Tender Box located at the Ministry of Finance in the Central Bank of Samoa building. 

All bids must be sealed but will be opened immediately after the given deadline in the presence of the Evaluation Committee; bidders can choose to send representatives to this process if they choose. 

The Government says it will not bear any costs related to the preparation of bids. 

To date, efforts by this newspaper to get a comment from the Corporation on electric cars and charging stations via email have not been responded to.

In 2016, Samoana Rentals owner, Leiataua James Arp was the first to bring an electric car into Samoa: the Nissan Leaf.

Previously, Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi, said more electric vehicles would minimise the impact of climate change and would be Samoa’s contribution to minimising carbon emissions. 

“While the [electric] cars are expensive, this is one way to express that we are serious about our fight against climate change and it is a bold yet important move,” said the Prime Minister. 

The former Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (M.N.R.E.) Chief Executive Officer, Ulu Bismarck Crawley - now an election candidate - in a previous interview said that another strategy under consideration by the Ministry to meet its Paris Agreement climate commitments was to decrease Samoa’s reliance on diesel by growing the market for electric cars. 

“These are all in the pipeline but Fiji has already engaged with electric cars but at the same time they realised a lot of problems such as batteries [and their disposal],” Ulu said. 

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