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NEWS UPDATES 11 August  2010

Philippines eyes more incentives for car exports

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The Philippine Board of Investments (BOI) is considering higher incentives for motor vehicle assembly investments to serve the export market.

Cristino Panlilio, BOI managing head, told reporters on Monday that the incentives-giving agency may draft a complementary executive order (EO) to the Comprehensive Motor Vehicle Development Program (CMVDP) expanding the perks for export-oriented automotive investments.

"We are willing to work with the industry to determine how we can improve the volume of our vehicle exports," Panlilio said, adding that the CMVDP or EO 877-A, which then President Arroyo issued, does not focus on exports.

Panlilio said the BOI may seek legislative approval of the incentives for auto exporters, as the agency is considering perks that may be "beyond" what is allowed by present law.

Besides an income tax holiday and other nonfiscal perks that participants in the current Motor Vehicle Development Program enjoy under the annual Investment Priorities Plan (IPP), assemblers also enjoy a 1 percent duty on imported knocked down parts.

At present, Ford Group Philippines is the only participant in the country's Automotive Export Program.

Ford Philippines has supply agreements with the US parent firm's subsidiaries in Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand-where it exports the Escape and Focus models-as well as with Mazda in Thailand.

Under the Automotive Export Program, the participants can avail of preferential rates for their importation of completely built up units, on the basis of equivalent foreign exchange earnings from their exports.

However, the net foreign exchange earning chargeable against imports on a per unit basis is phased down over a five-year period.

Panlilio said the drafting of the implementing rules and regulations of EO 877-A would continue, as the agency does not want to delay investment plans of auto players.

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