Press Release
January 24, 2018

But wide gap still seen with entry of new vehicles
Recto welcomes SC go-signal on car plates

Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto today welcomed the Supreme Court's lifting of the Temporary Restraining Order on the distribution of 700,000 motor vehicle license plates but their eventual distribution "might be a case of too little, too late."

For one, about half of the number of the plates had already been released to the vehicle owners before the High Court issued the TRO, Recto said.

It will be recalled that SC's injunction covered 300,000 pairs of plates for cars and other four-wheel vehicles, and 400,000 plates for motorcyles.

But the surge in vehicle sales over the past three years "has ballooned the deficit," Recto said.

Motorcycle sales zoomed to 1.14 million units in 2016, from 1.104 million units in 2015, Recto said, citing industry statistics.

"If you add the conservative 1.2 million sales last year, the total three year increase is easily 1.3 million units. Ilan ang natira doon sa impounded na plaka para sa motor, ayon sa balita? 200,000. Or 1/6th of the total need from 2015 to 2017. Hindi pa kasama ang prior years," he said.

This huge gap also applies in the car, SUV, AUV and truck segments, the senator said.

"Motor vehicles sold last year reached 425,673 units. Add the almost 360,000 new cars on the road in 2016. Plus the 289,000 units sold in 2015. That's a 1.74 million increase - in just 1,000 plus days," Recto said.

With the High Court ruling, Recto hopes that the resolution of all the legal, auditing, budgeting issues that hindered the production of plates will follow next.

"I agree that those who bungled this must be sanctioned. But in the meantime, for the sake of the car owners, and in the interest of motoring safety, can we not legally expedite the issuance of plates?" he said.

"Natanggal na ang hadlang sa pag-lift ng TRO. Ano namang solusyon ang maaasahan mula sa DOTR at gobyerno upang masolusyunan ang nananatiling napakalaking backlog sa plaka ng sasakyan?" Recto said.

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