It looks like the Philippines could be on its way to producing its own batteries for electric cars. With Republic Act No. 11697 or the ‘Electric Vehicle Industry Development Act’ now a law, several companies are already busy taking advantage of the recently passed bill.

One of those companies is San Miguel Corporation (SMC) which has plans to build a USD 500 million (or PHP 27.75 billion) electric car battery plant in the Dinagat Islands province. This was confirmed by Governor Nilo Demerey Jr. who recently got to meet with SMC president and CEO Ramon S. Ang last Thursday.

According to Demerey, the electric car battery plant is part of their efforts to industrialize the province and create more job opportunities. He added that the construction and full operation of the said plant will result in generating about 10,000 jobs.

SMC to build PHP 27.75B EV battery plant in Dinagat Islands image

“The establishment of the electric car battery plant will commence in September this year. This is part of our efforts to industrialize Dinagat Islands and create more job opportunities, increase the income of the province, and uplift the lives of our people,” shared Demerey.

Another reason why putting up an electric car battery plant in Dinagat Islands is a good idea is the fact that it already has the necessary components and raw materials. In addition, the plant will be constructed within the company’s 25,000 mining claims in the province. SMC has mining interests in the towns of Cagdianao, San Jose, and Basilisa. The mining claims are reportedly rich in minerals such as nickel, manganese, chromite, and iron - all of which are needed to manufacture batteries.

SMC to build PHP 27.75B EV battery plant in Dinagat Islands image

“We are now working on the necessary documents and pertinent papers for the start of the construction of the plant in September. President Marcos is instrumental in this endeavor, especially in the setting up of this battery plant in the Dinagat Islands,” added Demerey.

For now, other matters between the provincial government and SMC regarding the plant construction and tax holidays are still being finalized. With rising fuel prices and more EVs coming to the country, the creation of an electric car battery plant will help in further realizing the country’s plan to make EVs more popular.