Slow Adoption of Electric Two-Wheelers in the Philippines

As a Filipino, I have noticed that the Philippines has been slow in adopting electric two-wheelers. Unlike other parts of Asia where electric motorcycles and scooters are considered affordable and practical transportation options, in the Philippines, they are seen as luxury items and status symbols owned mainly by wealthy tech enthusiasts.

One of the reasons for this slow adoption is the lack of incentives for people to switch to electric motorcycles. While there is an existing incentive program for electric cars under Executive Order (EO) 12, electric two-wheelers are not included in the tariff exemptions. Gogoro Philippines, a partnership between Ayala Corporation and 917Ventures of Globe Telecom, is taking action to change this by working towards extending the coverage of EO 12 to include electric two-wheelers.

Gogoro, a major player in the electric two-wheeler market in Taiwan with a 90% market share, aims to have electric two-wheelers benefit from zero tariffs in the Philippine market. Gogoro Philippines CEO Bernard P. Llamzon is determined to make this happen, stating, "We are working on that, to also get the two-wheeled EVs as part of those that will benefit from zero tariff." Zero tariffs will make electric scooters more affordable and encourage their adoption in the Philippines.

If Gogoro Philippines succeeds, the company plans to expand its operations in the Philippines to include not only the sale and distribution of electric scooters but also the manufacturing of scooters and their components. This is significant considering the presence of large manufacturing facilities of motorcycle manufacturers like KTM, Yamaha, Honda, and Kawasaki in the Philippines.

The inclusion of electric two-wheelers under EO 12, if implemented, will greatly reduce the retail prices for consumers as tariffs will be removed for five years and discounts will be applied to parts. Gogoro has ambitious plans for the future, including the launch of a new Experience Center in the Philippines to officially begin its commercial operations.