While Congress has already approved House Bill 5636, the Senate is now deliberating on Senate Bill 1408. Both bills cover the comprehensive tax reform package and include provisions for excise tax for automobiles. Both bills also exempt electric and hybrid vehicles from excise tax.
Rommel Juan, president of the Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines (EVAP) expressed optimism this week after attending the consultative meeting organized by the Senate Ways and Means Committee regarding the proposed amendments to the provisions on the excise tax on automobiles.
In a letter given to the Senate committee, EVAP expressed its gratitude and utmost appreciation to the both Houses for proposing the exemption from excise tax both electric and hybrid vehicles. Juan says that finally, there will be some form of incentive for the electric and hybrid vehicles which have long been enjoying various forms of incentives in many other countries such as the USA, Norway, China and even our neighbors Thailand and Malaysia.
EVAP VP Edmund Araga who was also present in the public hearing adds that the EV industry needs this incentive to finally drive and promote the use of these low or even zero carbon emission alternatives nationwide. “The Philippine automotive industry is enjoying an unprecedented boom and we want more and more EVs and hybrids to take a slice of the automotive pie”.
In the proposed law, hybrid vehicles are also exempted as long as “its drive system consists of an efficient combustion engine and a powerful electric motor which can run at least 30 kms under one full charge”, which is not going to be a problem for any mainstream hybrid vehicle.
Recently, the Japanese government turned over 24 units of hybrid Toyota Prius cars to the Philippine government. “This is very timely so that we will be able to see more hybrid vehicles on the road, thus helping in our advocacy of promoting the use of alternative-fueled vehicles nationwide”, says Juan. “Thus, EVAP also supports the suggestion of Director Patrick Aquino of the Department of Energy that other alternative-fueled vehicles such as those using LPG and CNG be included in the exemption in excise tax as well”.
“Finally, we join the rest of the world in promoting low or zero carbon emission vehicles not only to help protect our environment but also to save on oil importations”, says Juan. “This development is increasingly relevant as the Philippines is set to host the very first ASEAN Electric and Hybrid Vehicles Summit on June 29 to 30, 2017 at the World Trade Center. This will be co-organized by EVAP, the Board of Investments, the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines and Meralco”.
Various major car manufacturers under CAMPI with EV and hybrid models will display their EV and hybrid vehicless alongside the locally-made EVs of EVAP member companies.
Juan concludes that It has been estimated that as much as 40% of the vehicles to be produced by 2030 will be electric vehicles. “The Philippines must be in the forefront of these developments as with government support, we will work hard to achieve our dream of becoming the EV manufacturing hub of the ASEAN region”.