Miss Earth 2022 backs tax breaks for e-vehicles to promote clean air
Miss Earth 2022 Mina Sue Choi is proving herself as a real environmentalist as she showed her view on the use of electric vehicles as means of transportation for Filipino commuters.
Choi said she is supporting the implementation of tariff breaks for electric vehicles and its components in the country, highlighting the necessity to save the environment without compromising people’s mobility.
“For the Philippines specifically, I think, especially they have a lot of congestion issues and a lot of burning fossil fuels as well still. I feel like this change is going to happen but it’s not gonna happen immediately because you know, it’s cheaper to use gas or to use oil,” Choi said in an interview during the 2023 International Ecotourism Travel Mart.
Choi is in the Philippines to host the pre-coronation event of the 2023 Miss Philippines Earth pageant, along with 2019 Miss Earth Nellys Pimentel, at the Lime Resort Manila in Pasay City Monday, April 3.
According to Choi, since the Philippines has various congestion issues and burning fossil fuel as its main source of power, the transition will not be immediately mainstreamed and will be based on the desire of the people to use e-vehicles.
Based on a study by the Statista Research Department, coal is still dominating the power production of the Philippines at 47.6 percent, followed by other fossils at 18 percent, and gas at 10.7 percent, with a total of 76.3 percent, while renewable energy such as wind, solar, bioenergy, hydro, and other renewables takes up 23.7 percent of the country’s total power source.
Earlier this year, Executive Order No. 12 series of 2023 was issued which aims to lower the tariff rates of electric vehicles to mainstream its usage in the country and help mitigate the impacts of climate change.
The beauty queen insisted that the implementation of EO 12 is good but it won’t be easy to persuade people to move out of the traditional mode of transportation even with the current incentives.
“More people demand this change. I think there’s gonna be a greater change in the fossil fuel industry as well. So I think it’s very vital that this change happens. I think it’s gonna happen,” the beauty queen added.
She stated that the transition to electric vehicles is happening in other countries as various leading automobile companies started to launch their first EVs such as Rolls Royce and Toyota.
However, under EO 12, electric motorcycles and other two-wheel electric vehicles are still subject to 30 percent import duty.
Calls to make the import tax break inclusive by amending EO 12 with the inclusion of two and three-wheeled EVs are gaining ground from industry stakeholders and clean-air advocates alike.
According to the Land Transportation Office, they recorded almost 8 million units of motorcycles in their agency. Motorcycles are also the most favored mode of transportation of motorists in the country.
“I think the government needs to put their input where they make incentives for people to want to, you know take EVs or take more sustainable mobility,” she stated.
According to the Department of Energy, the country is aiming to go full electric by 2040 by deploying around 6.3 million electric vehicles across the Philippines, which almost covered 50 percent of all vehicles on the road.