PH seen setting trend for electric vehicles in AsiaBy Amy R. Remo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The Philippines is expected to lead the way toward the widespread use of electric vehicles in the region, as it has begun implementing numerous initiatives geared toward promoting the massive use of these environment-friendly vehicles in the country.
In a statement, the newly formed Electric Vehicles Association of the Philippines (EVAP) said that the private sector’s interest in e-vehicles was spurred not just by the profit potential, but also the desire for clean air and the protection of the environment.
For instance, nongovernment organization Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities (iCSC) started the electric jeepney (eJeepney) program in the country back in 2007 under its Climate Friendly Cities Program.
The Motor Vehicle Parts Manufacturers Association of the Philippines (MVPMAP) and PhUV Inc. then stepped in by being the first to locally design, fabricate, assemble and mass-produce the eJeepneys for iCSC and other markets.
Reina Garcia of iCSC had said that iCSC’s Makati Green Route initiative was the first mass transport application of the electric vehicle.
“Our eJeepneys were also the very first to receive the LTO orange license plate for EVs and the LTFRB franchise for EVs to operate as public-utility vehicles,” Garcia added.
Ferdi Raquelsantos, president of both MVPMAP and PhUV Inc., added that eJeepneys can now be found in Pasig, Quezon City, Cebu, Bicol, Los Baños in Laguna, Iloilo, Cagayan de Oro, Batangas, Palawan, Ilocos region and Boracay.
“And we continue to locally design and assemble eJeepneys to a niche market of transport and shuttle service operators,” Raquelsantos said.
Many initiatives on the use of the electric tricycles (eTrikes) were also previously undertaken in Taguig, Surigao, Puerto Princesa, Boracay and Mandaluyong—some of which were made in collaboration with government agencies.
Power distributor Manila Electric Co., on the other hand, is showcasing the feasibility of using eShuttles and electric quadricycles (eQuads) for the shuttling needs of its employees, visitors and customers within the Meralco compound in Ortigas.
Victory Liner, meanwhile, brought in the country’s first electric bus (eBus).
Collectively, there are now about 400 electric vehicles running all over the archipelago, according to EVAP president Rommel Juan.
This initial success, according to Juan, has since attracted numerous players into this new “green” industry.
Phil Etro EV Inc. makes electric tricycles while Alternative Modern Transport has branched out from etrikes to ejeepneys as well.
“[These] various initiatives have spurred the government to take a more serious look at the electric vehicle industry,” Juan said.
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