Compared notes with my colleagues at Board of Investments this afternoon. We are all working together so that we could pull down the costs of production in relation to the PUV modernization program so that we could sell more affordable Francisco Passenger Jeepneys without sacrificing the quality.

PEZA and BOI are both under the same government agency, the Department of Trade and Industry. Our mandates are to spur development in the Philippines by strengthening the different businesses and industries, in this case, Manufacturing, and to provide jobs for Filipinos.

Which is why we oppose the granting of incentives to Completely Built Units (CBU) which does not give any benefits at all to Filipinos anyway. Giving them the same incentives as with local manufacturers sends a wrong signal that our government is exporting jobs that are supposed to be for Filipinos at home. As if naman maganda at matibay ang units nila diba? Mas maganda at mas matibay pa ang gawang pinoy on a Japanese platform. Hanggang ngayon nga gamit pa ng mga operators ang Francisco Jeepney with Japanese powertrains. But we all agree that it’s time to modernize.

It is good to know that we are on the same page with BOI. We just have to remind our colleagues in DOTr about our duty to the Filipino people of which, Filipino first!

With ASec Mulong Manlapig – CARS Program Director and Marissa Francisco Concepcion – CARS Program Manager.

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