Archive for the ‘Philippines’ Category

Philippines Imports Subdued

August 15, 2008

Philippines Gov has taken great lengths to shut down all illegal importing of used passenger cars.  It was a thriving business, but it depended on corrupt custom’s officials. As it reached nation attention, those who were abusing their power were removed and illegal imports were being confiscated. It seems for at least the short term that car imports are frozen.

HOWEVER… Importing diesel commercial vehicles is legal and still being done.  Most importing is done through  the Subic Bay Freeport Zone and the vehicles are converted to LHD.

Philippines Ban On Import Cars Questioned

August 5, 2008

Since our last post on the situation in Phillippines (read Import News For Phillipines), a series or rapid event have been taking place. It was just recently revealed that 5 government agencies purposly neglected to uphold the ban and there are a number of senators that disagree with the ban.

Just at the end of last month a Supreme Court ruling ruled in favor of the ban. But senators are still defying the ruling they feel is wrong. The problem is that the ban is an Executive Order (EO) made by the President rather than a bill/law passed by the Senate. The senators in objection feel that this area the EO affects is the Senate’s territory.

We must wait to see what will be the result of this: Either the ban stays and questionable import practices are stopped or the ban might be lifted. It’s question of who has the most authority.

Source – Inquirer.net

Driving On The Right Side… Of The Road Or Car?

April 11, 2008

As many of you may be aware, Japan is a RHD (Right Hand Drive) vehicle country like the UK. According to Wikipedia, about 34% of the world by population drive on the left, and 66% on the right. By roadway distances, about 28% drive on the left, and 72% on the right. To visualize this:

RHD vs. LHD on a World Map

Those in blue are RHD and those in red are LHD. The terms left or right hand drive refer to where the driver sits in the motor vehicle not where the car is on the road. So in the case of Japan, the steering wheel is on the right hand side.

Most markets that are already RHD will find much value in Japanese used vehicles. Areas such as South-East Asia, Oceania, Eastern Africa, and the British Isles are major importers. Because they use the same system as Japan, there are less hassles getting the vehicles imported. But just because a country doesn’t drive the same way as Japan doesn’t mean RHD vehicles can’t be imported.

For example, Russia is officially regulated for LHD traffic, but Japanese RHD cars are the single largest supplier of used cars to Russia. Last year over 440 thousand vehicles where exported from Japan into Russia. Russia is estimated to have more than 1.5 million RHD vehicles on its roads. In the far eastern regions, such as Vladivostok or Khabarovsk, RHD vehicles make up to 90% of the total. Many other LHD nations are also importing RHD in the thousands without any problems such as Canada, UAE, Chile, Mongolia, Cyprus, and Peru.

There are two considerations for importers. First, are RHD vehicles legally able to be imported, and more importantly, driven in your country. Even in the case that RHD autos cannot be used on your roads, many governments allow the vehicle to be modified so that it is switched to LHD.

The second consideration is if you are willing to drive “on the wrong side” or will you be able to sell cars to customers that are RHD. It is not a matter of being a safety hazard if the driver sits on the other side. A Canadian study showed that RHD drivers were more careful, thus less likely to get into accidents, than those who drove like normal.

It is also not about not getting able to feel comfortable driving RHD drive in a LHD nation. Most drivers who experience this challenge are able to overcome the awkwardness of driving differently within the first few hours on the road. The main issues are do you mind standing out a little bit and will it bring to much inconvenience to your lifestyle? For example, you’ll need a passenger to help you through drive-thru’s and at toll booths. If you don’t mind, and you can import, there are plenty of benefits.

Image and Statistics from Wikipedia under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License.

Import News For Philippines

March 10, 2008

Apparently, the Filipino Government has finally become active against illegal imports of used cars “smuggled” into their country. Laws which have banned the importation of used cars (heavily lobbied for by new car importers) have been around for a while, but before the government never really actively enforced these laws. Recently there has been changes as Customs have started seizing many cars throughout the Islands.

This is unfortunate news to Japanese exporters as last year over 11,400 vehicles were exported for the Philippines. Many Filipino importers have now canceled orders as their government have started to use X-ray machines on containers. For now, trade will have to wait till everything is sorted out.


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