Yokowo to invest P230 million to produce automotive wiring harness

JAPAN-BASED company Yokowo Co. Ltd. is investing P230 million in an automotive wiring harness and components production facility in Bataan in which it is expecting to hire around 800 people.

The company will break ground for the 3.7-hectare wire harness factory in the Hermosa Ecozone and Industrial Park in Bataan by January 2021, the Trade department said in a press release on Thursday. Operations are set to begin in April 2022.

Yokowo manufactures products for the electrical machinery and automotive industries, specializing in antennas, fine connectors, microwaves, and advanced devices for the automotive, semiconductor testing systems, and medical sectors, among others.

The company registered a 100% wholly owned business Yokowo Manufacturing of the Philippines at the Securities and Exchange Commission.

“The Philippine venture will support Yokowo’s in-vehicle communication equipment business which accounts for about 60% of the Group’s consolidated sales,” Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Special Trade Representative Dita Angara-Mathay said.

According to Yokowo Manufacturing of the Philippines Chief Executive Officer Yutaka Fujita, Philippine operations will be part of the regional supply chain that will respond to expected business volume increases and global expansion of its major clients.

This investment is the second Japan-based wiring factory to do business in the Philippines this year, with Sumitomo Wiring Systems, Ltd. breaking ground for its new factory in Pangasinan last month. The project is expected to add 10,000 workers to the company’s 55,000 local workforce.

The Philippines has a 6.5% share in the $80-billion global wiring harness market, DTI said in an earlier statement. IHS Markit in April forecast global auto sales to fall 22% to 70.3 million units this year compared with the figure in 2019. — Jenina P. Ibañez