The Board of Investments (BOI) is set to accept applications for the Comprehensive Automotive Resurgence Strategy (CARS) Program. Car and car parts manufacturers eligible for the program have sixty (60) days upon publication of the CARS memorandum circular to submit their applications. The memorandum circular announcing the opening of applications is scheduled to be published on Friday, January 15, 2016.
An interagency committee, composed of representatives from the Departments of Finance, Transportation and Communication, Science & Technology; Technical Education and Skills Development Authority; the Industry Development Council; and the National Competitiveness Council, will evaluate the applications within the prescribed one-month period. Board decisions are expected to be announced before June 2016.
“The opening of applications a week earlier than the mandated schedule augurs well for the CARS program. We are especially enthusiastic for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the car parts manufacturing sectorthatstand to benefit from the program,” Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary and Board of Investments (BOI) Managing Head Dr. Ceferino S. Rodolfo said.
Local car parts makers, most of which are SMEs, have expressed full support for the CARS program saying that the annual target production of 100,000 vehicles doubles the current completely knocked down (CKD) assemblies. The auto industry stakeholders’ project increased activities in domestic auto parts making, including complementing industries down the line. Some 70,000 personnel are currently employed by local parts makers.
The CARS Program (Executive Order No. 182), signed into law by President Benigno S. Aquino in May last year, provides fiscal support for investments in the manufacture of whole body large plastic parts, other strategic parts that are not currently produced locally, and provides variable incentives to induce both volume production and logistics efficiency.
The CARS program targets to generate 200,000 new jobs, bring in fresh investments worth US$1.2 billion, stimulate local demand by increasing vehicle sales to US$9.2 billion, and effectively implement industry regulations that will revitalize the Philippine automotive industry. The program is anchored on the resurgence of the automotive manufacturing industry and in priming the country as a regional automotive manufacturing hub.
“The CARS program is a model of committed collaboration among the public and private sectors, civil society, and academe. We share this milestone with stakeholders who have worked tirelessly over the past three years to finally arrive at this point,” said DTI Assistant Secretary Rafaelita Aldaba.
The CARS program, and its Implementing Rules and Regulations, is a result of exhaustive and rigorous work beginning from the crafting of the auto industry roadmap. In 2012, auto industry stakeholders, academe and the Board of Investments worked on the development of the Automotive Industry Roadmap and at each stage, stakeholders were consulted and updated.