PRIVATE emissions testing centers will be given an extended deadline to renew their accreditation, permitting them to continue operating during the lockdown.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in memorandum circular 20-40 signed on July 16 said centers holding certificates of accreditation set to expire during the lockdown in their place of business will be given a 60-day grace period to renew, starting from the lifting of the local lockdown.

The centers will be allowed to continue operations unless their accreditation is revoked for other reasons.

In March, Representative Rufus B. Rodriguez of Cagayan de Oro called for an investigation into long delays experienced by vehicle owners applying for emissions tests, saying that he has received complaints about a shortage in accredited emission testing centers.

He later sought to suspend the required smoke emission testing for motor vehicle registration while government operations are disrupted by lockdowns.

Once the lockdown has been lifted, DTI’s regional monitoring and enforcement will resume, checking compliance with accreditation requirements.

President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s Administrative Order No. 30 gives government agencies the power to issue guidelines on the filing of documents and payments and the suspension of deadlines during the lockdown. — Jenina P. Ibañez