The European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) called on the government to exempt electric vehicles (EV) from all countries from import taxes instead of limiting it to special trading partners in a letter to the Department of Energy.
“One of the most common means of accelerating EV adoption in developing countries like the Philippines is subsidizing vehicle prices. As such the ECCP Automotive committee reiterates the call for lowering or even the complete removal of the duties on EV imports to accelerate the country’s shift to electric vehicles,” read the letter.
The letter was sent a day after the National Economic and Development Authority board, chaired President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., endorsed on November 24 a modified executive order that will exempt completely built units of EVs imported from most favored nations.
The local industry association of electric vehicle firms has cheered the latest move by the government to temporarily remove the taxes for EVs for a period of five years, citing it as one of the major steps in mainstreaming more environment-friendly vehicles.
In 2021, the market share of electrified vehicles, which includes hybrid EVs, plug-in hybrid EVs and battery EVs, stood at a measly .31 percent, equivalent to 810 units.
The ECCP also said they support the recent consideration for the Comprehensive Roadmap for the Electric Vehicle Industry to have zero-duty for cars and SUVs in the household sector until 2035.
The agonizing slow uptake of environmentally friendlier electric vehicles in the country, despite the looming threats brought about by climate change which has been blamed on greenhouse gas emissions, can only be blamed on a government that has been seemingly unwilling to encourage the shift to EV, as it still doesn’t make financial sense for most Filipinos due to ridiculously high prices in the market which can be blamed on the lack of subsidies and incentives for a program that could significantly reduce the country’s contribution to the planet’s greenhouse gas emissions.
It’s almost 2023. It’s about time Filipinos are helped by their government in trying to make their own personal contributions to lowering the country’s greenhouse gas emissions. Encouraging a shift to EV vehicles that neither use fossil fuels nor produce harmful emissions is overdue.*