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Singapore

Proposed legislation to ensure safe and reliable EV charging, expand network

Under the Bill, electric vehicle charging operators will have to be licensed to prevent unregulated or ill-maintained chargers that can pose safety hazards.

03:13 Min
A new Electric Vehicles (EV) Charging Bill was tabled in Parliament on Wednesday (Nov 9) to help Singapore achieve its target of deploying 60,000 charging points by 2030 and for all vehicles to be of cleaner energy by 2040. Marcus Tan tells us more.

SINGAPORE: A new Electric Vehicles (EV) Charging Bill was tabled in Parliament on Wednesday (Nov 9) to help Singapore achieve its target of deploying 60,000 charging points by 2030 and for all vehicles to be of cleaner energy by 2040.

The Bill will regulate the safe charging of EVs, ensure the provision of reliable EV charging services and expand the network of accessible charging infrastructure in Singapore, said the Land Transport Authority (LTA) in a fact sheet.

The Bill will also provide LTA with statutory powers for enforcement.

WHAT DOES THE BILL COVER?

The EV Charging Bill will cover fixed and non-fixed chargers.

Fixed chargers include battery charge and swap stations and pantograph chargers. Non-fixed chargers are portable or mobile chargers.

The Bill will not cover chargers that are exclusively designed for charging non-EVs, such as personal mobility devices, power-assisted bicycles, electric vessels or electric aircraft.

REGULATING SAFE CHARGING

Under the Bill, LTA will regulate the supply, modification, advertisement, installation, certification, registration, use and maintenance of EV chargers, in order to minimise the proliferation of unregulated or ill-maintained chargers that can pose safety hazards.

This will also include chargers installed in private residences, an LTA spokesperson told CNA. 

"Landed home owners who own and operate their registered chargers for their own use need not obtain a licence. However, they will still be required to use their chargers properly and ensure that their chargers undergo periodic maintenance," said the spokesperson.

All chargers in Singapore will have to be installed, certified and used according to prescribed standards. These will reference standards such as Technical Reference 25 (TR25) for Electric Vehicle Charging Systems, and Singapore Standard 638 Code of Practice for Electrical Installations.

All chargers must be registered before use. Upon registration, a registration code will be issued for the charger, and a registration mark must be affixed to the charger.

Registered chargers will need to be inspected regularly in accordance with relevant standards, said LTA.

Both fixed and non-fixed EV chargers will be required to be certified by charger equipment specialists as fit for charging, said the LTA spokesperson.

"A charger equipment specialist is a person who is familiar with the technical specifications of the charger. LTA is working with the industry to develop a framework for such specialists, as part of the implementation of the new regulatory regime. In addition, for fixed chargers, the Licensed Electrical Worker will also be required to certify," added the spokesperson.

More details will be announced subsequently, together with the subsidiary legislation.

PROVIDING RELIABLE CHARGING SERVICES

EV charging operators will be required to obtain a licence to provide charging services, such as hiring out a fixed EV charger, providing battery swapping services or renting out a non-fixed EV charger.

These licensed operators will have to comply with conditions such as data sharing, purchasing of public liability insurance and maintaining the service uptimes of their chargers in their network.

Licences will be valid for a fixed period and can be renewed.

MANDATING EV CHARGER PROVISIONS

To expand the network of accessible EV charging infrastructure, the Bill will mandate developers of specific building works and development owners of specific electrical works to provide EV charging at their developments, said LTA.

Such building works are those that erect or re-erect a building or increase the existing gross floor area of a development by at least 50 per cent.

Specific electrical works are those that result in an increase of the approved electrical load to more than 280kVA.

Additionally, the Bill will mandate two charging provisions: Passive provision and active provision.

Passive provision requires the developer to supply at least 1.3kVA per car and motorcycle parking lot in the development. This means the development will be able to support 7.4KW charging points with smart charging capability in about one in five parking lots.

Active provision requires the developer to install a minimum number of charging points that draw a combined power of at least one-fifth of mandated passive provision. For instance, this can be complied with by installing 7.4kW charging points with smart charging capability in about one in 25 parking lots.

Developments with fewer than eight car and motorcycle lots will be exempted from the active provision mandate.

INSTALLING EV CHARGERS AT STRATA DEVELOPMENTS

With the Bill, amendments will be made to the Building Maintenance and Strata Management Act.

The threshold for management corporations (MCSTs) will be a simple majority of votes: More than 50 per cent of the number of subsidiary proprietors or the share value of lots represented at a general meeting will be required to pass the following resolutions.

First, any proposal to install or uninstall EV chargers in strata-titled developments, as long as the lease contract between the MCST and charging operator does not exceed 10 years and the proposal does not draw on MCST funds.

Second, any proposal to enact by-laws on the use of parking lots for EV charging. For example, designating charging lots to be used only by EVs.

PENALTIES FOR NON-COMPLIANCE  

The Bill sets out a range of offences in relation to the supply, installation, certification, registration and use of EV chargers. The penalties vary depending on the severity of the offence, said the LTA spokesperson.

For example, an individual who knowingly or recklessly charges an EV with an unregistered charger would be liable upon conviction to a maximum fine of S$5,000 or imprisonment of no more than six months, or both.

For a more severe offence, such as tampering with an EV charger so as to cause danger to persons and property, an individual would be liable upon conviction to a maximum fine of S$100,000 or imprisonment of no more than five years, or to both.

TRANSITIONAL ARRANGEMENTS

Upon commencement of the Bill, existing suppliers can continue to supply non-approved EV chargers for six months; existing EV chargers that are not registered can continue to be used for six months; and existing operators can carry on their operations without a licence for 12 months.

The Transport Ministry and LTA will work with stakeholders to facilitate these transitional arrangements.

Source: CNA/gy(cy)
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