Big South Korean group eyes deal with Meralco
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The LS Group, a unit of the LG conglomerate and the 13th-biggest business group in South Korea, is looking at a partnership with power distributor Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) to explore opportunities in the smart grid technology and the electric vehicle industry.
Trade Undersecretary Cristino L. Panlilio said that LS Group officials led by chairman John Koo, a member of the founding family of the LG Group, recently spoke to him and other officials of the Department of Trade and Industry to discuss the possibility of cooperating with Meralco in the development of a smart grid in the Philippines.
According to Panlilio, this technology could lead to “more efficient demand-side management of power, zero incidence of overloading and tripping, bi-direction of energy flows and provide room for the progressive introduction of renewable energy into the grid.”
Meralco is gearing for the rollout of its proposed smart grid road map in a bid to make Philippine industries more competitive in the global arena and, at the same time, empower all Filipino electricity consumers with new technological platforms advocating energy savings and conservation.
A smart grid, according to Meralco officials, would also be a platform for new services such as prepaid electricity and home networks and would support the entry of renewable energy and a “plug-and-play” experience for e-vehicles.
By July this year, Meralco will conduct pilot tests for prepaid electricity. The power distributor will also be working with the Mandaluyong city government to pilot charging stations for electric tricycles this year.
Meanwhile, the LS Group, through its subsidiary LS Industrial Systems, has also offered integrated technologies and services for electric vehicle components and charging infrastructure, according to Panlilio.—Amy R. Remo
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