Govt, other sectors pledge to push for development of electric vehicles

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The government, some nongovernmental organizations and the academe have pledged to “scale up and accelerate electric vehicle development” in the country, according to the Motor Vehicle Parts Manufacturers Association of the Philippines (MVPMAP), one of the organizers of the First Philippine Electric Vehicle (EV) Summit.

Aiming to craft a long-term “road map” for the EV industry, the two-day summit garnered support from over 250 participants from national agencies, city governments, banks and businesses, civil society groups and international industry associations, MVPMAP said.

“The summit ended on a full charge, with robust plans, new alliances and investor interest,” said Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities Executive Director Red Constantino. “This gathering was about solutions and all representatives from the public and private sector contributed positively, from titans of local industry to jeepney driver associations.”

Gia Ibay, climate change head of summit co-organizer World Wide Fund for Nature, said, “Harnessing the potential of the market is critical to the country’s response to the climate crisis. Sustainable transport is a key component that can greatly help manage climate change risks and at the same time contribute to the development goals of the Philippines.”

Ibay’s view was echoed by Ariel Torres, chief executive officer of Alternative Modern Transport, who said that the “market for electric vehicles in the Philippines is big enough for all,” citing in particular Mindanao as an area with a potential that’s “particularly promising.”

MVPMAP said that other issues tackled at the summit were regulatory and financing matters, along with challenges posed by battery development and charging stations. The group added that participants presented solutions to hurdle existing EV issues.

“Microfinance is absolutely crucial in scaling up electric vehicle deployment,” said Mariel Rapisura, president of Social Enterprise Development Partnerships Capital Credit.

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