The automotive industry expects sales to hit 500,000 by 2020, or two years ahead of the original target in 2022, amid rising demand from the middle class.
Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. president Rommel Gutierrez said the group revised its sales forecast in 2016 to 370,000 units, or up 10,000 units from the previous target of 360,000 units.
“We hit 300,000 units in 2015, a target we ourselves set for 2018. Now, we are quite confident we will be able to hit 500,000 units ahead of the projected schedule by 2022,” Gutierrez said Friday at the sidelines of a pre-event briefing for a motor show.
“It is still conservative and we intend to review this new timetable by 2018,” he said.
Gutierrez said the sales projections were a moving target given the rapid growth of the Philippine automotive industry.
The local automotive sector projected sales to hit 500,000 units in the next four years because of a steady growth in income.
The industry noted nearly half of the Filipino households did now own cars.
Gutierrez said that with the automotive incentives program of the government, car companies were confident owning a car would be easier.
Sales in the first six monthsof 2016 reached 167,481 units, or more than half of the 2015 figure.
“We are optimistic we will reach our target of 370,000 units on the back of economic expansion and the growth of the middle class,” said Gutierrez.
The automotive sector accounts for 12 percent of the industrial output and 4 percent of the total gross domestic product during the previous administration, industry estimates show.
The automotive industry remains one of the major drivers of the country’s industrial sector with sales of about P250 billion in the last three years.
“Together with the government, we will work to increase the share of the manufacturing sector to total gross domestic product from 23 percent to 30 percent with employment increasing from 9 percent to 15 percent,” said Gutierrez.
The 6th Philippine International Motor Show, meanwhile, is slated September 14 to 18, 2016, at the World Trade Center Metro Manila.
Seventeen of the country’s top automotive manufacturers and distributors will showcase their latest vehicles and automotive technologies in the brand heritage display.