By Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat
Hyundai Asia Resources, Inc. (HARI) and the Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines (EVAP) are pushing government for the adoption of EVs and incentives for investors.
This was raised at a forum organized by HARI and the Association of Vehicle Importers and Distributors (AVID).
Alongside, EVAP Executive Director Jose Bienvenido Manuel Biona, who was invited to speak at the briefing, HARI called for increased collaboration among automakers, a viable roadmap for EV adoption, and competitive incentive packages from the government to encourage investment in the industry.
HARI is committed to ramping up the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) in the Philippines at the first Landscape automotive industry briefing of 2019.
HARI President and CEO and AVID President Ma. Fe Perez-Agudo: “We are encouraged by our government’s increasing focus on the environment by inviting South Korean automotive players to invest in the promising local EV industry… Through the EV space, we will boost the competitiveness and overall sustainability of our country for years to come.”
The government is already working with South Korean automotive players like Hyundai Motor Company (HMC) to invest in the local electric vehicle industry.
The two countries have also worked to forge a free trade agreement (FTA) seeking to increase market access. Over the past few months, HARI has made a concerted effort to help the administration foster a welcoming environment for investment in EVs.
In April 2018, Hyundai introduced the Ioniq Hybrid to the Philippine market, making it the country’s first mass-market hybrid. HARI then debuted the Kona Electric, the country’s first commercially-available fully electric vehicle, in April 2019.
“We are encouraged by our government’s increasing focus on the environment by inviting South Korean automotive players to invest in the promising local EV industry. Already, the Philippines and South Korea are working to forge a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) that will pave the way for increased market access, including automotive products. On our part, we continue to work closely with industry and government partners to help create an environment that will spur the development of the country’s EV industry,” Agudo said.
Agudo added that, outside of lowering import taxes and other fiscal incentives, government should also look into non-fiscal incentives such as free registration for hybrid/EV vehicles, parking, and toll fees to encourage the shift to more eco-friendly modes of transport.
“This goes beyond Hyundai’s business,” she said. “This is about leaving a lasting legacy for future generations. We believe in doing business right and through the EV space, we will boost the competitiveness and overall sustainability of our country for years to come.”