Senate wants coherent auto industry roadmap

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The Senate will hold public hearings on the long-delayed Automotive Manufacturing Industry Roadmap to ensure that its policies will not contradict existing regulations, according to Senator Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino 4th, chairman of the Senate committee on trade.

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Senator Aquino told reporters at the 5th Philippine International Motor Show on Thursday that the Senate will call a hearing on Monday to discuss the government’s long-term policies for the car industry.

“If you look at our shipping, logistics, congestion, it really shows na wala talaga tayong [that we really have no]long-term planning. A lot of our policies are short term,” Aquino said.

“Pagdating sa [When it comes to the] automotive industry, if you want to set an industry that will create more jobs, we need to make sure it is integrated with the other plans,” he added.

Senator Aquino said that the roadmap should also be compatible with the capacity of available infrastructures.

The roadmap framework consists of strategic planning from the assembly of parts, manufacturing into cars, distribution and sales in the country in preparation for the Asean market integration.

The Senate may also look at the possibility of creating a policy framework to minimize traffic congestion in the country. Singapore, for example, charges expensive registration fees, he said.

Taxes and registration fees for new and old vehicles should also harmonize with each other, he added.

He said the Senate is still not open to talking about tax incentives but hinted that electric vehicles may get it.

“But in the Philippines, unfortunately, hindi pa naipapasa ang [we have not yet passed the]electric vehicle incentives act. We are not talking about incentives. We are still on integrating the policies,” he said.

The Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. earlier asked the government to support and establish policies to maximize the opportunity for car manufacturers in preparation for the upcoming Asean market integration.

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