Press Release
March 29, 2023

Zubiri Thanks EVT for Investing in the PH

On Tuesday, Senate President Juan Miguel F. Zubiri attended the signing of a lease agreement between Envirotech Vehicles, Inc. (EVT) and real estate developer Berthaphil, Inc., to cement EVT's move to establish a manufacturing facility at the Clark Freeport Zone.

EVT is a United States-based transportation industry provider, specializing in all-electric vehicles for commercial and industrial use. Headed by President and CEO Phillip Oldridge, EVT has been looking to expand its operations to Southeast Asia.

"I know that Phillip was also looking at Singapore and Malaysia before deciding to set up camp here, so I am immensely grateful that EVT saw the potential in the Philippines, and chose us in the end," said Zubiri.

Zubiri, author and principal sponsor of the Ease of the Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act, has been guiding EVT as it explored its investment opportunities in the Philippines, personally setting up meetings with concerned agencies and offices, and facilitating a survey of real estate options in Clark.

EVT partnered with Berthaphil, Inc., which was represented at the signing by Corporate Secretary Arlene Aniciete. While operating from the leased facility, EVT is also working on developing its own facility in Clark, which they expect to complete by December 2025.

"This signing marks the start of a very healthy investment climate in the Philippines," said Zubiri. EVT's entry into the country comes at the heels of the Senate granting its concurrence to the ratification of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement--one of the administration's priority measures, and a move which will allow the Philippines to open our doors to more foreign investments, and become a more active participant in international trade.

Over the next five years, EVT is investing 80 million USD into the country, and they are expecting to generate eight hundred direct jobs in three areas: manufacturing, green energy, and technology, toward the production of four thousand vehicles per year. Apart from these, EVT foresees the creation of four hundred more indirect jobs.

EVT's entry into the Philippines also coincides with the country's ongoing PUV Modernization Program.

"With EVT's operations here, we can really take advantage of the local production of e-vehicles and e-vehicle parts for our modernization efforts," said Zubiri. "This will be a cheaper, quicker, and overall more sustainable way of implementing our PUV modernization."

"This is very important to me personally because I'm an environmentalist," added Zubiri, who is the author of various environmental laws, including the Electric Vehicle Industry Development Act, the Clean Air Act, and the Renewable Energy Act. "And we would really like to see your zero-emission vehicles plying the roads here."

"On top of EVT being instrumental in greening our transport sector, its electric vehicles will also be a welcome reprieve to rising fuel costs.

"The number one complaint of jeepney drivers and operators here is the cost of fuel, especially in times of global crisis like the Russia-Ukraine conflict. If their vehicles are running on batteries, they will be protected from the volatile prices of fuel, and they will be able to sustain a decent and secure livelihood."

Present at the signing were Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno, Trade and Industry Secretary Alfredo Pascual, Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla, National Economic and Development Authority Secretary Arsenio Balisacan, and Clark Development Corporation President Agnes Devanadera.

"I have every faith that this is going to be a fruitful partnership that will result in great mutual gains for EVT and the country, and I am glad to have played a small part in bringing this partnership together."

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