Toyota Motor Philippines Corp. (TMP) inaugurated Friday , Sept. 24, its P4.7 billion Batangas Vehicle Center (BVC), as the car giant expressed confidence in the domestic automotive industry and the country’s strong economic recovery after the pandemic.
The 32-hectare BVC facility located near the Batangas port can handle stock capacity of 4,500 units to top off TMP’s existing center in Santa Rosa, Laguna, for overall annual capacity of over 160,000 units at maximum level.
With the establishment of the BVC, the Santa Rosa Vehicle Center will be dedicated to the growing completely-knocked down (CKD) Vios and Innova models that will cater the increasing customer demand for locally-made Toyota vehicles.
The BVC also streamlines vehicle handling prior to inter-island transport and ultimately ensures promised delivery time and quality of Toyota vehicles for dealers and customers.
“The opening of the Batangas Vehicle Center reflects our confidence in the future. Beyond just expanding our capacity to receive and deliver the best quality Toyota vehicles, we are fully committing ourselves to manufacturing happiness and driving the Filipino people to a better tomorrow, with mobility for all,” said TMP Chairman Afred Ty.
“This Batangas Vehicle Center is our renewed commitment to better days ahead. This is part of our joint efforts with the government, business sector and Filipino people to win the war against COVID-19 and build a better tomorrow, together,” Ty remarked in a speech.
Despite temporary lockdowns, he said, TMP has sustained the local production of Vios and Innova, safeguarding the employment of around 40,000 Filipinos in its total value chain.
Ty further said that “motor vehicle sales and services was one of the key sectors that contributed to the 11.8 percent growth in gross domestic product in the second quarter of this year.” TMP itself exports original equipment parts worldwide raising as much as $816.59 million a year, he added.
TMP President Atsuhiro Okamoto said the BVC is just one of the company’s “many channels to address today’s and future volume requirements of the local automotive market.”
Okamoto highlighted that the operation of BVC is essential in its distribution network that will address the increasing market demands. “This facility gives a stock capacity of 4,500 units on top of our existing stockyard in Santa Rosa [City, Laguna], bringing to an annual capacity of over 160,000 units,” said Okamoto in a speech.
For his part, Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon M. Lopez cited that TMP for pursuing the project, especially amid the pandemic. He said the investment will create more jobs for Filipinos, especially in Batangas. It will also revolutionize the logistics efficiency of TMP’s operations in the country.
“Notably, the BVC will serve as TMPC’s central facility for CBU distribution, thus leaving the existing logistics facility in Santa Rosa more focused on the production of completely knocked down units,” he said.
Lopez further commended TMP for streamlining its logistics operations, as it poses an opportunity to expand local manufacturing capacities. “This is, indeed, a momentous expansion in the Philippine automotive industry, bearing in mind that logistics is a major driver, not only of cost, but of quality and delivery as well,” he added.
He said that strategic location of the BVC near the Batangas port validates the goals of the Comprehensive Automotive Resurgence Strategy Program of DTI to address logistics inefficiency inherent in local automotive manufacturing.
TMP further said that the BVC was constructed with sustainable features that prioritize human safety in each process and implement responsible practices for zero or net positive impact to environment.
Vehicle processing lines, service and office areas follow the “Safe, Clean & Bright” guidelines as well as COVID-19 safety and health protocols to protect everyone’s safety in the workplace. Major design principles at core facilities were conceived and integrated in close collaboration with Toyota Motor Corporation in Japan.
BVC’s 18- truck covered lanes for vehicle loading and unloading is a weather-proof structure, designed for added safety, considering the changing weather conditions in the country. The design, both applied at Santa Rosa VLC and BVC, makes TMP he first among Toyota logistic facilities to have such structure in the Asia Pacific region after Japan.
Likewise, a sewage treatment plant and a material recovery facility are built inside the BVC for proper management of water and wastes. In addition, a six-hectare parcel of land is dedicated to greening and afforestation to enhance biodiversity in the area.
Future plans include the use of solar energy, rainwater harvesting and flood control features. Overall, the BVC has 26 percent land area designated for environmental management and conservation.