Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Alfredo Pascual welcomed the public announcement of Japanese carmaker Toyota to revive the assembly of its utility vehicle model Tamaraw in the Philippines.
In an interview with a local radio-television network yesterday, Pascual said the revival of Toyota Tamaraw manufacturing in the country will reinvigorate local automotive and automotive parts production in the country, and will also support the industry’s growth as they recover from the pandemic.
During the official working visit of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. to Japan last week, Toyota Motors Philippines (TMP) president Atsuhiro Okamoto presented the PHP4.4-billion investments of the company, which will involve bringing back the local assembly of Tamaraw.
TMP vice president Rommel Gutierrez said the PHP4.4 billion investments will cover vehicle production and parts localization.
Aside from the assembly of Tamaraw, Pascual said TMP will manufacture the cab and chassis and sell them to other vehicle body builders.
The trade chief added this project will also support the Toyota’s mobility solutions that was launched last year.
Moreover, Gutierrez said TMP’s Toyota Mobility Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) will be the new-generation Tamaraw, which is the first Asian utility vehicle introduced in the 1970s.
“There is a rising demand for LCVs and TMP sees this as an opportunity to provide a more suitable and affordable option for Filipino entrepreneurs. Localization of the model will also allow TMP to respond to the specific conversion requirements/specialized needs of Philippine customers,” he said.
He added the introduction of the Toyota Mobility LCV will help sustain the local automotive manufacturing, especially with the termination of local production by other original equipment manufacturers.*PNA