The Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines (EVAP) has revised its growth target for e-vehicle adoption in the country from 300,000 units by 2030 to one million units in anticipation of incentives for the sector, clearer regulations, and growing awareness on the benefits of using EVs.
EVAP President Edmund Araga announced the new growth target for EVs at the press conference for the 9th Philippine Electric Vehicle Summit on August 26-27 this year.
According to Araga, the target is anchored on the passage of the EV Charging Stations Bill, which has been passed in the Senate but is still awaiting the Lower House version. The bill seeks to provide the rules and regulations, including tax incentives to investors.
“Our target is to be more noisier than ever on approving the law. And what we are doing right now is we never stop, we move forward on having it approved, hoping that this year, it will happen,” he said noting that all will come into place once the regulations are established.
In addition, he said that consumers are getting more aware about the benefits of e-vehicles. Thus, there would be more demand for environment-friendly vehicles.
Already, some global EV charging companies have already entered the local market in partnership with Filipino groups. These global charger suppliers include Delta, ABB, Wallchargers and
OEM (Original equipment manufacturers) have also brought their e-vehicle models into the country.
“There were more than 5 or 6 e car models that were launched in spite of the pandemic,” he noted.
Aside from Nissan Leaf, Araga said that Nissan has another e-vehicle model that it can introduce to the
Dax Avenido, Nissan Philippines Inc. (NPI) head of communications, said that NPI continues to support EV efforts in the Philippine starting with Leaf, which has been available locally since May this year at suggested retail price of P2.7 million.
Avenido said they have already established charging stations with its dealer network, including two in Metro Manila, one in Visayas and one in Mindanao. They are studying the business for potential expansion of EV charging stations and if there are incentives under the proposed bill to give more incentives to EV buyers.
Aside from Nissan Leaf, Araga cited the Electric Vehicle Owners Society or EVOS wherein car manufacturers such as BYD, Hyundai, Jaguar and Porsche are jointly leading in offering to the market more affordable e-cars.
However, Araga said that the industry is challenged in terms of financing access for investors in EV charging stations, which costs an average of P1 million per station. With that, Araga has urged the Department of Finance to encourage banks to lend to EV charging station investors and EV manufacturers.
He urged banks to lend based on purchase orders or fleet order as this will assure continuous production because there is local demand.
Local EV manufacturers can easily export because they have the technology, proven skills and capability and experience, but Araga said they would rather concentrate in the local market because there is a good and viable domestic market for EVs. “The only big question is financing schemes because the capitalization is very significant for them to pull through,” he said.
Already, there are already several EVs on the road already including the 2-wheel, 3 wheel bikes because they are cheaper. “If this mindset will elevate further to 4-wheels for private individuals that will be a big plus,” he said.
Local EV producers are also working with Department of Energy and the Department of Transportation for the deployment of e-vehicles for public transportation. But EVAP is also pursuing more partnerships with proactive local government units to tap EVs for their communities.
Meralco, the country’s largest electric utility firm and a partner EVAP since its first summit, also continued to support EVAP under its sustainability program
“We are walking the talk,” said Raymond Ravelo, Meralco vice-president and chief sustainability officer.
He said that under its Green Mobility program, Meralco has already launched 60 electric motorcycles for its own fleet for its business centers and is deploying 70 more electronic cars such pick ups, vans and the like not just motorcycles to further electrify its fleet.
Externally, Meraloco has provided 16 EVs to Makati City, and other units to Pampanga, Nueva Visaya and Marikina.