Finally, the government is working to prepare us for the future of motoring: electric cars.

After the PH electric vehicle industry bill went to bicam last October, the consolidated version of House Bill No. 10213 and Senate Bill No. 1382 is on its final step: the signature of the President.

According to our Senate insider, the enrolled copies of the collective version of SB No. 1382 and HB No. 10213 have already been sent to the Office of the President through the Philippine Legislative Liaison Office (PPLO). With President Duterte's signature the only thing needed for the bill to become law, the Philippines is taking its first steps towards an EV future. Of course, he can just ignore it and it lapses to become law anyway. He can also veto it though we don't see that happening.

Once passed, it could see the creation of the Electric Vehicles Advisory Board (EVAB) which would be tasked with creating the policies to further accelerate the development and commercialization of EVs. More importantly, EVAB would oversee the formation of the Comprehensive Roadmap for the Electric-Vehicle Industry (CREVI). This should serve as the development plan and key guideline to set the standards/specifications of EVs, installing charging stations, local manufacturing of EVs, supply chain infrastructure in the country.

More importantly, this law could make EVs of all types cheaper because import duties and taxes could be removed or reduced (beyond TRAIN law excise). In addition, the charging infrastructure will be expanded and fair rates will be set for charging. Dedicated parking for EVs, as well as number coding exemption, are also being considered, but we will need to check the final version to be certain.

With the Philippines set to take its first steps towards electric mobility, could this make EV ownership more mainstream and affordable for all?