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Business Times 26 Sep 07
Smart Energy building compressed natural gas station in Mandai
By Samuel Ee
SMART Energy is investing $12 million to build the first compressed natural gas (CNG) station outside Jurong Island.
The company, which is a subsidiary of taxi operator Smart Automobile, held a groundbreaking ceremony at its Mandai Link site yesterday. Smart Energy chairman Johnny Harjantho says he expects to start operations by January 2008.
Currently, CNG is only dispensed at Jurong Island. Smart's Mandai Link station will be connected to Jurong Island by a pipeline and provide a more convenient location for refuelling CNG-powered vehicles.
Smart Automobile operates a fleet of 770 cabs, of which 110 can run on CNG. The latter are a mixture of Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Toyota Camry and Hyundai Azera models. Mr Harjantho says he will be buying at least 300 more of the Camry to be retrofitted to run on CNG.
He adds that Smart taxi drivers will get their CNG at '20 to 40 per cent' less than the pump price of diesel, which is currently $1.303 per litre. Members of the public will get 'at least a 20 per cent discount'.
Smart bought the half- hectare piece of land on a 15-year lease from JTC eight months ago. It says the $12 million investment figure includes the cost of the land, building and equipment.
The station was originally supposed to have been built by another company. But it dropped out of the project last year and Smart took over.
Smart is also planning another CNG refuelling station in Serangoon North next August, but the gas will be delivered by trailer.
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