Manila: Up to 6.6 million new electric vehicles (EV) are projected to roll on Philippine roads by 2030 — about half of which will be two-wheelers and e-trikes — an industry official said.
This ambitious target, however, is contingent on several factors: how well the new EV law is executed, regional competition posed by Asean neighbours, how the challenge from "jeepney" sector is tackled, and overall market acceptance of EVs.
The Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines (EVAP) has projected cumulative EV sales to hit the 6.6 million mark at the 11th EV Summit in Pasay City, which concluded here on Friday.
Notably, EVAP official Ferdinand Raquelsantos, mentioned that more than half of this number will be two-wheeled and three-wheeled vehicles, which are popular "last-mile" transport solution in the developing country.
Currently, around 60 per cent of e-vehicles fall into this category (two and three-wheel vehicles), he said.
The country, however, has a few things going for it. The biggest is the policy shift towards renewables. These include a new law that mandates charging stations as well as a raft of incentives for EV makers and owners. Meanwhile, vendors are also responding, with compelling offers, including price cuts.
Going forward, such enticements could help drive uptake for EVs, which is currently low.
The Freeport Area of Bataan (FAB),
Clark Freeport and Special Economic Zone (CFEZ),
Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport (CSEZFP),
Cavite Export Processing Zone (CEPZ),
Subic Special Economic and Freeport Zone, and
San Carlos Ecozone.
As of end-2022, the DoE reported the registration of only 9,000 EVs, with only 327 charging stations in operation. All told, EVs only make up 1 per cent of the current market.
Official hopes the picture could change soon. From 2023 to 2028, the Department of Energy (DoE) aims to establish an EV fleet comprising 2.45 million cars, tricycles, motorcycles, and buses.
It also targets the installation of 65,000 EV charging stations throughout the country during this time frame. From 2029 to 2034, it aims to add 1.85 million more EVs on Philippine roads, with 42,000 more charging stations.
Perks under new EV law
There are a number of policy levers through which the government seeks to hit these targets. For one, rules under the RA 11697, also known as EVIDA (Electric Vehicle Industry Development Act), have set specific EV mandates for businesses.
For example, it requires that every 20 parking spaces in a business or commercial setting must have 1 slot allocated for EVs — which then requires business and parking lot owners to make necessary modifications in order to comply.
Also, under the law, the DoE can mandate utility companies to roll out a minimum number of charging stations. The department is currently pushing to ramp up EV rollout to 10 per cent of all vehicle fleets.
Notably, petrol stations across the country are also “encouraged” to have EV charge points, based on certain guidelines. For EV owners, one perk under the new law includes an exemption from traffic congestion scheme (number coding), and discounts on annual EV registration fees, among others.
Overall, the move seeks to create an EV-driven “ecosystem”, including the establishment of a special economic zone (SEZ) or “cluster” for EVs — to boost investments, local manufacturing, curb CO2 emissions and promote sustainable transport.
This initiative forms part of the Electric Vehicle Incentives Scheme (EVIS), a plan pushed by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to ramp local EV and components production, and leapfrog an eco-friendly future.
DTI Undersecretary Rafaelita Aldaba pointed to the upsides of having EV ecozones: easing the conduct of business, cutting logistics costs, and benefitting customers by making EVs more price competitive.
The scheme also allows EV makers to benefit from various incentives under the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) law. Aldaba reckons the bundle of incentives could draw more innovators and manufacturers to the country.