Local suppliers eyed for jeepney modernization program

Louella Desiderio - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — More than half, or 140,000 units, of the initial 200,000 new public utility vehicles (PUV) which will replace the old jeepneys under the government’s PUV modernization program will come from local manufacturers, according to the Board of Investments.

In a press conference, Marissa Concepcion, BOI program manager for the Comprehensive Automotive Resurgence Strategy (CARS) Program, said   local manufacturers would be tap to supply 140,000 units of the initial 200,000 new PUV units under the jeepney modernization program, while the remaining 60,000 units would come from foreign manufacturers.

Of the 140,000 units, Concepcion  said 60,000 units would be Class 1 PUVs or those which can carry nine to 22 seated passengers, while 80,000 units would be Class 2, 3 and 4.

A Class 2 vehicle can carry more than 22 passengers with some standing passengers, while Class 3 has a capacity of more than 22 seated passengers, and Class 4 can accommodate more than 22 seated passengers with provisions for cargo.

To allow local manufacturers to compete, BOI managing head Ceferino Rodolfo  said the government would  provide support to local manufacturers.

Earlier, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) decided to stop the search for a third participant in the CARS program and instead utilize the remaining P9-billion budget of the scheme for a new program to support the assembly of eco-friendly PUV.

The DTI – BOI is in the final stages of developing the eco-PUV Program to provide fiscal support for the manufacture of the replacement PUVs to be used under the PUV modernization program.

For the eco-PUV program, Concepcion said the government intends to provide support particularly for the assembly of Class 2 and Class 3 vehicles, citing these are the units which require government assistance .

 “The program we are designing right now will only give support to Class 2 and 3 because Class 1, this is the standard product you see. They actually don’t need much support… It’s in the Class 2 and 3, new product that we will help build through fiscal support,” she said.

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