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Cebu News

Council budget committee endorses use of e-vehicles

Mary Ruth R. Malinao - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — The Cebu City Council’s committee on budget and finance has issued a favorable endorsement on the use of electric vehicles in the city as a sustainable mode of transportation.

“It would be advantageous to Cebu City Government if E-Vehicles would be developed including options for micro mobility as an attractive and feasible mode of transportation to reduce dependence on fossil fuels,” the committee report stated.

The council approved the said committee report as moved by Councilor Noel Wenceslao, who is the committee’s chairman.

Councilor Nestor Archival Sr. earlier requested the committee to make a study on the possibility of purchasing electric vehicles that would be used by the city government.

This, after the council’s committees on transportation, and environment favorably endorsed the use of e-vehicles in the city.

In a joint-committee report, both said that the biggest hurdle to the adoption of electric vehicles is the cost.

The committee on budget and finance said that with the increasing prices of gasoline and diesel increasing anew, there has been a renewed interest in vehicles that run on alternative sources of power among Filipinos.

According to the International Trade Administration (ITA), the Philippines continues to develop its electric vehicle market as industry and government are cooperating to support such adoption in the Philippines.

From an energy sector perspective, proposed legislation seeks to build an entire ecosystem supportive of e-vehicles by requiring the Philippine Department of Energy (DOE) to create an Electric Vehicle Roadmap that will form part of the Philippine Energy Plan. It will include a charging infrastructure and fiscal and non-fiscal incentives.

The committee said that former Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said that the department is pursuing the deployment of 20,000 imported electric vehicles and putting up 5,000 EV charging stations for the next five years.

This, he said, would cut fuel use by over 145 million liters or an equivalent of P8 billion in terms of fuel costs.

The Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines (EVAP) is optimistic that the issuance of the charging infrastructure guidelines and policy by the DOE will help motivate businesses to put up and adopt EV charging stations by providing fiscal incentives.

“Electric vehicles can provide many benefits. First and probably the most important is that you do not have to concern yourself anymore with the price of gasoline and diesel,” read the committee report.

The committee stated that buying electric vehicles could help reduce air pollution.

“EVs (electric vehicles) are said to be cheaper to maintain because they have fewer moving parts prone to break down compared to conventional internal combustion engine vehicles, not to mention there no longer will be any need for periodic oil changes. Unfortunately, there are very few quick-charging stations currently available,” it added.

It was Archival who suggested for the city government to start the gradual use of electric vehicles to be able to save money.

He said the city should adopt a proof of concept wherein instead of utilizing gasoline or diesel engines, they should purchase electric cars. — GMR (FREEMAN)

E-VEHICLE

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