So the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has made it official: the provisional safeguard bond on imported vehicles is no more following the investigation and recommendation made by the Tariff Commission (TC). That means once the Bureau of Customers (BOC) publishes their Customs Memorandum Order (CMO), they won't be charging a PHP 70,000 or 110,000 cash bond for imported passenger cars and light commercial vehicles, respectively.

And now we come to the potentially complicated refund process for automakers. One of the first ones we confirmed is with Nissan because, well, their safeguard process is somewhat unusual. Instead of treating the SG bond as a separate charge with a separate receipt, Nissan opted to include it in the suggested retail price (SRP) of the vehicle. That means if you paid PHP 1,849,000 for a top-of-the-line Pro-4X, the SG is already a part of that.

Complex this may seem, it looks like they are working on making it as straightforward as possible. For starters, there is only one model that was affected: the facelifted and updated 2021 Navara. The rest of the Nissan model lineup is unaffected when it comes to the safeguard duty because they still had stocks prior to the imposition of the SG bond. That narrows down the number of customers they have to reach out to.

When it comes to the rebate for customers who purchased their 2021 Navara models in cash, the amount they will get back is PHP 123,200 and not 110,000. The reason (presumably) is that the 12% VAT was applied to the 110,000 as well, and so that means cash buyers will get the same amount if they bought a pick-up from Toyota or Isuzu, or Mitsubishi which applied the SG as a separate transaction.

When it comes to the rebate for customers who purchased their 2021 Navara models under a financing plan, the amount is the same: PHP 123,200. That was actually unexpected, as we would have thought that the financing plan with the bank would have made the process complicated. Untangling the SG from the SRP after the vehicle was financed have been very difficult. Such a process would have definitely resulted in financial penalties and fees of some kind.

Here's what will happen: the banks will no longer recompute the amount financed. The catch is that the monthly amortization will stay the same for customers with the 2021 Navara for the term they signed for.

Nissan says their dealers are contacting customers that purchased the 2021 Nissan Navara to advise them of the matter. Once Nissan receives the refund from the BOC following their CMO, the dealers will then contact the customers again to start the process of actually returning the SG bond.

It's also very worthy to note that Nissan will now have to recompute the SRP of the Navara to remove the SG bond. As to how much, we'll confirm later on.