Trade Secretary Alfredo Pascual expressed support for the temporary removal of import tariffs for electric vehicles for a period of five years.
According to Pascual, the DTI initially proposed the tariff removal with the aim of encouraging Filipinos to shift to electric vehicles as well as to bring down their prices.
"[The] DTI proposed the temporary removal of tariff on EVs for a period of five years. [The agency] believes that the measure will help develop the local EV market and encourage consumers to consider shifting to EVs for a cleaner and greener transportation option," Pascual said in a statement.
"The temporary elimination of tariffs is seen to drive down the purchase of EVs, thereby generating increased demand and encouraging investments in EV charging stations," he added.
Pascual said the agency's proposal was met with opposition from groups as the Electric Vehicles Association of the Philippines (EVAP) and the Motorcycle Development Program Participants Association (MDPPA) requested for the exclusion of e-motorcycles.
President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. earlier issued Executive Order No. 12, which temporarily modifies the rates of import duty on electric vehicles, parts, and components.
There has been an increasing clamor for inclusivity in the coverage of the said EO following its issuance, Pascual said.
Pascual mentioned that think tank Stratbase ADR Institute President Dindo Manhit has expressed belief that EO 12 "should be revised to include e-motorcycles in the tax break as it is 'discriminatory' and rich-favored."
On February 21, 2024, the said EO shall be subject to review by the National Economic and Development Authority wherein recommendations for possible amendment shall be submitted for approval of the President. — RSJ, GMA Integrated News