Fuso trucks, buses, and public utility vehicles (PUVs) in the Philippines are expected to gain more traction with the recent establishment of Sojitz Fuso Philippines as the brand’s distributor in the country. And one of the biggest opportunities for Fuso is the government’s PUV Modernization Program aimed at replacing some 200,000 public utility jeepneys during the next six years.
The program is now going full blast as more and more old jeepneys are being upgraded and new ones are coming in. The operators are slowly realizing that shifting from old to new is actually more convenient and so much more profitable.
As bank financing for PUVs becomes more accessible and mainstream, more loan applications are now being approved by both Landbank and DBP. The loan package comes with a government subsidy of P80,000 to cover the downpayment. The processes for operators converting to transport corporations and drivers forming transport cooperatives have also been made easy.
The result is that modern PUVs traversing the Senate, Taguig, and Pateros routes. It can be observed that the riding public prefers the modern Class 2 PUVs with their spacious headroom allowing for standing passengers that translates into extra income, comfortable air-conditioning, and added safety features.
All these resulted in a deluge of truck platform suppliers wanting to get into the PUVMP. The latest to join the bandwagon is Fuso, with the launching of its newly-appointed general distributor of Fuso trucks and buses in the country, Sojitz Fuso Philippines.
The event was attended by many personalities in the local automotive and truck industries with DOTr Usec. for Road Transport Mark De Leon as the guest of honor and keynote speaker. An interesting sidelight of the event was the introduction of Fuso’s two new model entries for the PUVMP, the Class 2 Canter Commuter and the Class 3 Canter Express, both powered by Euro 4 diesel engines. Both are also fully compliant with the Bureau of Philippine Standards PNS 2126:2017 covering body dimensions for the modern PUV.
Leading truck body builder Centro Manufacturing Corporation was there to offer its full support to Sojitz Fuso Philippines as one of its main accredited truck body builders for the program.
“We congratulate Sojitz Fuso Philippines for being appointed the new distributor of Fuso in the Philippines and for proactively joining the PUV Modernization Program of the Philippines. We at Centro wish to say that we are behind Sojitz Fuso Philippines all the way as we usher in the new era of public transport and modern logistics in the Philippines,” said Centro president Raffy Juan.
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