ADB: Philippines Will lead for $500-Million Electric Tricycle Manufacturing in the World

Philippines seen as e-vehicle parts manufacturing hub – Foreign Companies in relocating in the Philippines.

The Asian Development Bank sees the Philippines becoming a regional manufacturing hub for electric vehicle parts, which is if the government and its partners will be able to successfully pull off the $500-million electric tricycle program.

In an interview with the Inquirer, Neeraj K. Jain, country director of the ADB for the Philippines said the e-Trike project, which will involve the roll out of 100,000 units of electronic tricycles across the country, was an initiative that could generate economic and "transformational" gains not only for tricycle drivers but for a whole new industry—the electric vehicle industry.

Sohail Hasnie, principal energy specialist at the ADB, disclosed in the interview that five to six foreign companies had expressed interest in relocating their factories to the Philippines, after seeing that the government and the ADB were aggressively pushing forward with the e-Trike project.

"These are big names in the industry," added Jain.

Companies interested in relocating in the Philippines include large battery manufacturer's overseas, spare parts manufacturers, motorcycle manufacturers and renewable energy firms.

Jain said these suppliers and manufacturers were willing to relocate because they knew the ADB was involved in the project.

"They know we can do (the same project) in Indonesia, Thailand or Vietnam. In case these companies decide to relocate here, they know we can help them set up a regional market. It becomes a win-win situation—e-Trike drivers earn more, the country saves on costly oil imports, reduces pollution, the country benefits from new (industry), new jobs are created," Jain said.

According to Hasnie, the bidding process for the procurement of the e-trikes has started. The Department of Energy conducted the pre-qualification process two weeks ago, which had attracted 11 bidders. The short-list of pre-qualified e-Trike suppliers will be released within the next two weeks.

The pre-qualified bidders will be provided with the complete design documents, including the mandatory service package, which means the suppliers will have to provide after-sales services and warranty.

The e-Trike project is supported by local auto parts makers led by the Motor Vehicle Parts Manufacturers Association of the Philippines (MVPMAP) and the Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines (EVAP). Both groups believe that the successful rollout of the program will attract major electric vehicle partners to set up shops in the Philippines.

Under the program, the government plans to replace 100,000 fuel-fed tricycle units with energy efficient e-trikes to help reduce the transport sector's gasoline consumption by 561,000 barrels yearly, reducing 260,000 tons of carbon dioxide emission yearly.

At present, more than 3.5 million motorized tricycles are operating in the country, producing more than 10 million tons of carbon dioxide and using nearly $5 billion worth of imported fuel yearly.


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