Minister: future of e-bikes under study

TRANSIT took note of this article in which the Minister of Transport is now quoted as saying that studies are being done to determine the feasibility of having electric bicycles on the road.

This is an abrupt about-turn from his earlier comments, that the Ministry would consider banning the e-bikes – comments which were rubbished by his cabinet & party colleague, the Minister of Energy, Green Technology & Water.

Future of electric bicycles under study (The Star)
Thursday March 24, 2011
KUALA LUMPUR: Studies are being done to determine the feasibility of having electric bicycles on the road, said Transport Minister Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha.

“Studies are being conducted and recommendations have been put to the Cabinet,” he said yesterday.

Kong said the use of electric or e-bicycles need to be regulated as there were currently no laws governing their usage.

“If allowed, we need to determine who can use it and what rules it will come under,” he added.

Users of e-bicycles have said they should not be banned as the benefits outweigh the risks.

The e-bicycles, which is powered by motors, have been used in Malaysia for more than six years.

TRANSIT Says:

Let us hope that this ends another embarrassing chapter of “government says this, government says that”. Now, let’s see if public transport infrastructure asset-owner Prasarana can get into the cycle-sharing concept through the sharing of bicycles & e-bikes at LRT & MRT stations as well as bus hubs.

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10 thoughts on “Minister: future of e-bikes under study”

  1. Luckily he still have the rational conscious to realise the previous statement was a total rubbish about e-bike. I hope the ministry can come out with a guideline soon because I would like to buy one too.

  2. I hope the government or in this case the transport ministry, (hey we shouldn’t be vague!) will publish the result of the studies in a transparent manner.

    @Patrick
    Actually, it is a good thing that the government is thinking before it acts.

    If I were to substitute “e-bicycles” with something else, such as “ganja” or some other “traditional” herb that gives hallucinogenic effect, then you will realize that it is nothing funny at all. I just hope that they will get the right people to evaluate it, and not over-spend on evaluating it.

  3. RE: Bob Dylan

    Did you know the government wanted to ban e-bicycles outright, because it was not safe for motorists? Public opposition came along, thankfully.

    It’s also really weird that you might put e-bicycles on the same level as herbs with “hallucogenic effects”.

  4. Govt. prioritises according to what serves their interest
    What bicycles, electric or not when there are no dedicated lanes in infrastructure planning?

    1. @tk

      Malaysians have been using electric bicycles for the past 6 years at least, without the dedicated lanes that you mention. When there is a will, there is a way.

      Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

  5. @Patrick

    Actually the bit about ganja was to illustrate that such stuff has medicinal value (benefits) and that a study need be conducted before simply allowing or banning it. How is the government going to know about how to act on something if it does not know anything about it?

    Should the government simply follow what other governments do? In the case ganja, perhaps allowing it as is done in the Netherlands? Or control its usage as is done in other parts of the world. The key word here is research, therefore a conclusive study need be done.

  6. @Patrick

    Yeap, The government did indeed looked into banning electric bicycles. The problem here is that whatever rational they had or research they did must have convinced them to act accordingly.

    Oops, I think I have overgeneralized to include the whole Malaysian government to have decided upon it. Anyways, someone in the government obviously decided upon it and almost had it his way.

    And if not for the meddling journalist… Who always happens to get in the way. Unfortunately I don’t think, “always” is the case in Malaysia, so “sometimes”…

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