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DOTr sees need to shift transport system to electric vehicles

May 17, 2023

MANILA, Philippines — The shift from petroleum-fed transportation to electric vehicles is necessary now in efforts to decarbonize the environment, said Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista.

“We want a green transport system to be in place sooner, and we are working on a roadmap to transition public transport system to EVs,” Bautista said in a business club forum.

In fact, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) was reportedly studying the possibility of requiring public transportation to shift to electric vehicles due to its contribution to both government and non-government efforts to decarbonize the country’s road network and improve air quality.

Reports say that the DOTr also considered giving incentives, like tax breaks and “soft loans,” to the country’s transport operators to help them jumpstart their shift to EVs.

“We are also asking the transport operators that instead of running on Euro 5 and Euro 6 engines, which are of less air hazard emissions, they can go on full electric since such would be our way to a total green transport system,” Bautista added.

Earlier this year, the government issued Executive Order No. 12 series of 2023, aiming to lower the tariff rates for EVs and its components from 5 to 30 percent down to an amended 0 percent.

Several types of EVs received the said tax breaks, except for e-motorcycles that are still subject to 30 percent import duty despite holding a large number of motorists using motorcycles in the country. 

Based on Statista Research Department, almost 7.81 million registered motorcycles and tricycles were tallied last 2022.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) initially said that the implementation of EO12 will nourish the local industry of EVs, and it will help persuade Filipinos to use a cleaner mode of transportation. 

Various stakeholders have also expressed their appeal to make the EO more inclusive by including e-motorcycles in temporarily suspending import tariff rates. 

The import tariff break for e-motorcycles was supported by Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines (EVAP) President Edmund Araga while noting that opportunities must be given to local manufacturers.

 Meanwhile, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian has been pushing for the usage of EVs in the country by strictly implementing the Electric Vehicle Industry Development Act (EVIDA) amidst the increasing gas prices. 

The implementation of EO12 is one of the government’s solutions to slash the country’s carbon emission to improve its air quality. 

The Department of Energy will also roll out almost 2.45 million EVs and 6,500 EV charging stations nationwide between 2023 and 2028.

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