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Manila launches E-trike project

MANILA, Philippines – Manila launched its E-trike project to combat air pollution and improve the livelihood of some 1,500 legally franchised tricycle drivers in the city.
Mayor Joseph Estrada on Wednesday (April 5) formally turnover 50 units of e-trikes of driver-beneficiaries in Binondo.
The mayor said he hopes the E-trike project will help uplift the lives of the city’s “poorest of the poor” by providing them with an alternative and sustainable source of income.
According to Estrada, the program’s main objective is providing the poor tricycle and ‘kuliglig’ drivers an upgraded public transport vehicle which they can call their own, and from which they could earn more.
He said that under the program, the beneficiaries don’t need to pay any ‘boundary’.
“Installment payments and the costs of charging their E-trikes’ batteries will even be subsidized by the city government,” Estrada said.
The city government has bought 280 units of E-trikes, at P400,000 each, for distribution this year. The Manila Electric Co. or Meralco has constructed several charging stations, the first in Binondo.
The Japanese-manufactured E-trikes run on gel-type batteries than can be fully charged in just five hours. It can carry up to six passengers and has a maximum speed of 40-45 kilometer per hour (kph).
Estrada said the city government will procure “thousands” more of these E-Trikes to gradually replace fuel-run tricycles in the coming years, thus complementing the city government’s efforts to reduce air pollution in the city.
The E-Trikes will have exclusively franchised routes, so as not to compete with fuel-run tricycles, he added.
The first batch of 50 beneficiaries were all residents of District 3, which has been chosen as the pilot site for the E-trike project. The district covers the areas of Binondo, Quiapo, San Nicolas, and Sta. Cruz.
The mayor said E-Trikes will also be introduced in Malate, Ermita, and University Belt.

Criselda Cabangon David, a happy mother of two kids, is a full-time Sociologist at the City Government of Lucena, Quezon Province. She is currently the Managing Editor of Ang Diaryo Natin Sunday News, a weekly local community newspaper in the Philippines and an active member of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines.