Duterte assures car industry of fair fiscal reforms


President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday assured the automotive industry of a tax reform plan that is “fair and supportive” even if the proposals included higher taxes on cars.

In a speech during the launch of the first locally-assembled Mitsubishi Mirage G4 sub-compact in Malacañang, Duterte assured the industry that the proposed adjustments in car excise taxes will not have a negative impact on its growth.

“Let me take this opportunity, too, to reassure our stakeholders from the automotive industry that we will take due consideration of your concerns about our package of proposals, fiscal reforms,” the President said.

“We will ensure that its impact will be fair and supportive of your growth as participants in the CARS Program,” Duterte said. CARS is the Comprehensive Auto Resurgence Strategy.

The President said the program demonstrates the government’s commitment “to pursue initiatives that will create more jobs for our people and help achieve sustained prosperity in our country.”

He said the program complements the government’s Zero Plus Ten-Point Socioeconomic Agenda, which aims to improve all sectors in terms of efficiency and development.

“Under the CARS Program, the investment committed or commitment of the Mitsubishi is expected to add around 7,900 direct employment opportunities and an estimated additional government revenue of P5.72 billion,” Duterte said.

“This is a testament to the kind of friendship and cooperation that Japan and the Philippines have shared and nurtured throughout the years,” he added.

He thanked Mitsubishi for its “dedication and partnership,” citing the first of the 200,000 Mirage sub-compacts that will be locally made under the CARS Program.

“Proudly, we can now say that the Mitsubishi Mirage, currently the second top-selling passenger car in the country, is made in the Philippines,” the President said.

He then recalled his state visit to Japan, where he met Mitsubishi Motors Chairman and President Osamu Masuko, who signed a letter of intent reaffirming the carmaker’s commitment to the CARS Program.

“Back here, the Department of Trade and Industry and the Bureau of Investments have been tirelessly working with stakeholders to ensure that the program is successfully implemented. Because of this collaboration, the first unit of the ‘Made in the Philippines’ Mirage has been manufactured using materials and supplies from local parts manufacturers and other related local industries in the country,” Duterte noted.

“Let us continue working together in enlivening our business environment and in making the Philippines not only a regional auto manufacturing hub, but as one of the world’s liveliest economies. Let the cars we manufacture be the vehicles of progress and let the excellence of hard work be the fuel that will drive us towards greater success,” he added.


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