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Charge+ to develop longest EV charging highway in Southeast Asia

Charge+ to develop longest EV charging highway in Southeast Asia
Image courtesy of Charge+

Charge+ announced a plan to develop a 5,000 kilometre (km) electric vehicle (EV) charging highway across five countries in Southeast Asia. In the future, EV drivers can look forward to using the Charge+ App to conveniently access 45 direct current (DC) fast-charging locations spanning the countries of Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam.

The planned EV charging highway is slated to be the longest in Southeast Asia and among the longest of its kind in the world. The planning is for the distance between charging stations to be about 120 km on average. The stations are located either directly on the highway or less than 2 km from the interchanges.

Charge+ is the green mobility business of Sunseap Group, the largest and most established clean energy solutions provider in Singapore.

This major initiative taps on Charge+โ€™s track record as the leading EV charging provider in the Southeast Asian region where Charge+ is already operating in six countries, with about 1,000 charging points currently in operation. All the stations along the highway will take on DC fast charging so as to allow a fast turnaround charging time for EV drivers.

This project will help to address the longstanding concern by prospective EV buyers that EVs are not suitable for long-distance driving due to the lack of charging infrastructure, especially in more remote areas, as well as the cross-border challenges in registering for various applications or apps and handling different currency payments. The planned charging stations, coupled with the app from Charge+, will therefore provide EV drivers with the cross-border convenience and boost overall confidence in the transition to EVs, as the primary mode of light-duty land transport in Southeast Asia in the future.

Of the 45 charging locations, Charge+ has confirmed 18 locations in the first phase where Charge+ will invest in, own and operate the charging stations. These stations are planned to be operational by the end of 2024 and include urban charging hubs in six key cities, namely Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Phnom Penh, Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. The remaining 27 locations will be ready by end of 2025 and will comprise both stations owned by Charge+ and stations owned by strategic partners which have allowed Charge+ to roam with them.

As part of this announcement, Charge+ has also announced its strategic partnership with EGAT, the Thai state-owned enterprise that is responsible for energy generation and electricity sales to the distribution companies in Thailand. EGAT is providing Charge+ with a site in Thap Sakae about 320 km south of Bangkok to set up a DC charging station. In addition, EGAT will partner with Charge+ on roaming so that Charge+ users can use the same Charge+ app to access EGAT charging stations in Thailand seamlessly.

โ€œIn Southeast Asia, EVs suffer from the persistent perception that they are inconvenient for long-distance and cross-border travel. We are therefore excited to unveil this 5,000 km EV charging highway project which will revolutionise societal perception of EVs in this region and provide EV drivers with the much needed confidence. This project is made possible by Charge+โ€™s extensive operations across Southeast Asia as well as strategic partnerships in roaming opportunities which will further expand the Charge+ network,โ€ said Goh Chee Kiong, CEO of Charge+.

โ€œEver since the founding of Charge+ in 2018, our vision was to catalyse electric mobility across Southeast Asia and provide EV drivers with a seamless experience. This EV charging highway project through five countries, represents another strategic milestone in the journey of Charge+ to be a truly impactful EV charging player for this region,โ€ said Ong Tze Boon, chairman of Charge+.