Tenaga Nasional’s (TNB) green energy subsidiary TNBX is entering the electric vehicle charging scene in a big way. Having just switched on its TNB Electron DC fast charging station at the northbound Tapah R&R along the North-South Highway, the company is pushing forward with a RM90 million investment to develop its charging infrastructure over the next two years.
According to Bernama, this will result in ten chargers ready for use along the highway, up from the three it has already installed. “We are targeting to build seven more DC stations in Malaysia by the end of this year along the North-South Highway,” said programme director of the EV project management office Mohd Junaizee Mohd Noor. “Insyaallah, by year-end TNB will have 10 DC EV throughout the highway.”
Aside from the 180kW station in Tapah, TNBX also has a charger at the northbound Ayer Keroh R&R in Melaka, which pushes out 90kW through two nozzles. A second such charger is located at the northbound Paka R&R in Terengganu along the East Coast Expressway (ECE), which, like the North-South Highway, is also managed by PLUS Malaysia. Both these stations were opened last month, and all three are currently free of charge to use until the end of February.
Junaizee added that TNB was also in discussions to build DC charging stations along trunk roads, as part of the company’s commitment to building consumer confidence in using EVs for long distance travels without having to worry about running out of battery. “With these DC stations we want to reduce range anxiety and at the same time encourage the use of EVs in the future,” he said.
When asked about the challenges faced by TNB and other EV charging providers in Malaysia, Junaizee listed the need for approvals for various types of charging stations as one of the constraints. “Every local authority has its own regulations and these should be streamlined soon to ensure this problem can be resolved,” he said. “I hope with nationwide coordination, the period for approval from local authorities can be shortened to two months at least.”
Junaizee added the lack of places to install the chargers was also one of the problems, which is why TNB is open to collaborating with local companies interested in providing space in exchange for extending the electricity supply.
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