It's official, MVIS is no longer required for registration. Just days after the Senate called for its suspension, President Rodrigo Duterte, through presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, ordered not to make it mandatory. This was mentioned during today's press briefing (February 11, 2021).

“Hindi na po mandatory ang MVIS. Ibig sabihin, kinakailangan walang bagong singil, walang karagdagang singil para sa pagpaparehistro ng mga sasakyan. Ito ang naging desisyon ng Presidente kung saan binalanse ng Pangulo ang pinagdadaanan ng ating mga kababayan sa gitna ng krisis na nararanasan hindi lang ng Pilipinas kundi ang buong mundo,” said Roque.

(MVIS is no longer mandatory. This means there should be no additional fees for vehicle registration. This was the decision of the President wherein he had to balance what our countrymen our going through amid the worldwide crisis.)

So, does this mean the plan is scrapped or will it be put on hold in the meantime? The latter is a more likely scenario since the DOTr and LTO already have several PMVICs put up by private entities. Also, Roque said that it is no longer required, but it is possible that those who still want to undergo the test may still do so of their own accord.

During the Senate hearings, Senator Grace Poe said the costs are prohibitive for what's been called an imperfect system. Senators also questioned why MVIS was rolled out if PMVICs were unable to test all types of vehicles yet. Specifically, inspection centers only have the capacity to test private vehicles, so PUVs and larger vehicles such as trucks and buses cannot be properly assessed. The committee also mentioned the numerous complaints of private motorists regarding the testing process itself. Another issue pointed out by senators was the timing of its implementation.

In response to that, DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade requested PMVICs to lower their fees to the same rates being offered by Private Emission Testing Centers (PETCs) earlier today. At the same time, he said they should suspend collecting re-inspection fees for one year. That said, the President's decision could affect the DOTr's plea.