Automotive investments in Philippines may hit P100b by 2010

Posted on 10 August 2007

The Philippines automotive industry is looking at a total investment of P100 billion by 2010 with the implementation of the proposed Market Expansion Program, which aims to promote the Philippines as a low-cost site for vehicle assembly.

Elizabeth Lee, president of the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc., said yesterday that industry investment hit P91 billion as of end-2006.

"With the MEP, it is possible that total investments of the industry would hit P100 billion by 2010. We want the Philippines to become the CKD hub for both the domestic and export markets," said Lee on the sidelines of the 1st Philippine International Motor Show in Pasay City.

The MEP was expected to bring in additional investments and put the Philippines in the radar screens of major car makers.

"I can't say how much more [in additional investments] but there will definitely be more [for CKD assembly]," said Lee.

Around P30 billion of the total investments in the industry so far were poured into local assembly operations, or completely knocked down vehicles.

Campi and the Board of Investments are crafting the guidelines and the implementing rules and regulations of the proposed MEP under the Motor Vehicle Development Program.

The draft could be finalized in October and implemented through the issuance of an Executive Order from Malaca?ang. The government is firming up the fiscal and non-fiscal incentives that participants will enjoy under the program.

The program is designed to encourage original equipment manufacturers like car makers to choose the Philippines as site for their regional rollout of CKD assembly in the future.

"The auto industry is the only viable domestic manufacturing industry since it has a long value chain. There are about 17,000 moving parts in one vehicle alone. We want to veer away from mere importation," said Lee.

Manila Standard Today, August 10, 2007

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