Nope, that figure in the heading is not a typo: It will require the Land Transportation Office (LTO) P2.5 billion to finish manufacturing the remaining 18 million motorcycle plates in its backlog until mid-2022.
During a recent Laging Handa briefing, LTO head Edgar Galvante said: “Inumpisahan natin ito para sa motorcycles registered simula ng 2018 pataas. At iyon namang below 2018—meaning 2017 and earlier—hinahangad po nating ma-manufacture a little later. Ang projection natin diyan by 2022 eh ang kailangan nating mai-produce na motorcycle plate is around 18 million.”
According to Galvante, the lack of machinery caused the delay. The equipment, which will be installed by engineers from Germany and the Netherlands, has yet to be delivered due to the COVID-induced restrictions. Because of this, the LTO is also looking at the possibility of outsourcing the printing of roughly 10 million motorcycle plates.
“Hindi po kakayanin sa natitirang panahon para matugunan ang pangangailangang ito,” he said. “Kaya plinano po ng LTO at ng DOTr na iyong pababa po—from 2017 pababa—pagawa na po natin sa ibang mga manufacturers ng plate kung saan kakailanganin po namin ng halagang about P2.5 billion para matugunan po ito.”
Around three million plates have already been issued locally.
Galvante added: “Kung maibibigay iyong kaukulang pondo para ma-cover-an ito, sa palagay namin magagawa po iyon. Dahil hindi lang po ang LTO plate-making plant ang gagawa noong plaka kundi iyon na rin pong maaring manalo na mag-supply para dito sa ibang plaka.
“Hopefully, maibigay para magamit ang pondo para i-contract out ang number ng plaka na hindi natin magagawa.”
In April, the agency suspended its license-plate production due to suspected COVID-19 cases in the facility. Back then, Galvante stressed that they will not sacrifice the safety of their employees just to proceed with plate-making.
NOTE: This article first appeared on TopBikes.ph. Minor edits have been made.
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