Following a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed by Department of Agriculture (DA), the country may soon see its first homegrown tire manufacturer. DA has just signed the MOU with Philippine Rubber Farmers Association (PRFA) and Phoenix Petroleum Philippines Inc. for local tire manufacturing. It is for the construction of a Php 1 billion tire factory, to be located in Mindanao.
PRFA, the Department of Agriculture and Phoenix Petroleum have agreed to invest in the setting up of Philippine Agila Tire Manufacturing or PATM. In a statement, Department of Agriculture Emmanual F. Pinol said, “Other Asian countries have already established their own tire-manufacturing company, why can’t we also do that? A tire factory in the Philippines will also mean a stable income for the country’s growing number of rubber farmers”.
Phoenix Petroleum will be facilitating the construction of PATM through the oil company's partnership with Finnish tire-manufacturing company Black Donuts Engineering Inc. Areas in Davao and Cotabato are being considered for the new factory. At the moment, it has been proposed that the factory will be a 50-hectare facility. The Department of Agriculture adds that PATM aims to produce 4 million tires per year. This equates to 16,000 metric tons of rubber every year.
According to government data, Davao and Cotabato areas accounted for 42 percent of the country's total rubber production in 2016. Mindanao as a whole meanwhile takes up 99 percent of the total rubber production in the Philippines, hence the decision to set up a factory there.