TOYOTA Motor Philippines Corp. (TMP) is aiming to boost to 40% the local content of its car model enrolled under the Comprehensive Automotive Resurgence Strategy (CARS) program next year.
TMP First Vice-President Rommel R. Gutierrez said the local content of the Toyota Vios is currently at 35%, a little more than half of the target under the CARS program to increase local content to 60% by 2022.
Established by Executive Order 182 as signed by then President Benigno S. C. Aquino III in 2015, the CARS program provides incentives to three car makers to individually produce their own models locally with a production volume of at least 200,000 units within six years. This equates to an average of 33,333 vehicles annually.
Asked if the company can meet the annual target next year, Mr. Gutierrez told reporters on Wednesday: “That’s our target. We have to.”
TMP president Satoru Suzuki earlier said achieving the target is a tall order considering the current weak market conditions.
The auto industry saw sales slump this year, due to the implementation of higher excise taxes on automobiles last January. This was compounded by the rising inflation rate and higher fuel prices.
Latest joint data from the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. and Truck Manufacturers Association showed vehicle sales fell by 14% year-on-year to 325,465 for the first eleven months of 2018.
CAMPI earlier said it expects a 10-15% decline in vehicle sales for the full year.
In 2019, the industry expects sales to bounce back by 10% coming from a low base, and boosted by election spending. — J.C.Lim