A cashless payment system will soon be available for motorists to buy CNG. It will involve a vehicle management system where a computer chip will be installed on cars converted by a licensed CNG converter so that the motorist can simply pull up to the pump, fill up and leave.
NGC CNG president Curtis Mohammed announced plans for the cashless system at the official opening of Harkness Energy’s Trader James Unipet service station in Mc Bean, Couva, on Thursday evening.
The new service station is the culmination of months of planning and collaboration between Unipet, NGC and Harkness Energy to create a different business model. It is the largest service station in the Couva area and operates on a 24-hour basis.
Rahul Rampersad, CEO of Harkness Energy, said the project started eight years ago and despite bureaucratic challenges, the vision had come to fruition. Rampersad said his focus would be on customer service to win the hearts of the motoring public. He also revealed that all the staff at the service station are from Couva and environs.
Mohammed said four more CNG stations will soon be opening at Cyrus Road, El Soccoro, as well as Munroe Road in Chaguanas, Preysal in Couva and O’Meara, Arima.
In addition, there will be upgrades to stations at Point Fortin, PTSC in Port of Spain, Rushworth Street and Mt Lambert. Mohammed said by the end of this year, 20 CNG stations will be operating in T&T. He said close to 7000 CNG powered vehicles are in operation and more than 700,000 vehicles with an average age of 15 years that can benefit from CNG.
Unipet Chairman Dr Afraz Ali said the company’s focus remains on diversifying its offerings to the public in the drive to remain profitable. He said Unipet is keeping a close eye on the quality of the fuel supplied by Paria as there have been considerable losses due to changes in temperature. He said the company engaged a consultant to deal with this issue and is calling for standard temperature accounting to deal with the losses.