The Daily Tribune
Ford Philippines formally kicked-off production at its P1.1 billion Flex Fuel Vehicle (FFV) engine plant in Santa Rosa, reaffirming Ford’s commitment to manufacturing in the Philippines and its ongoing efforts to help develop the local biofuels industry. The world-class facility is Ford’s first to produce FFV engines in Asean, highlighting the Philippines’ role as Ford’s Center of Excellence in FFV technology for the region.
The Santa Rosa plant will manufacture E20* FFV engines to be used in the Ford Focus 1.8L and 2.0L models produced for both domestic and export markets. The FFV engines will also be exported to South Africa, expanding Ford Philippines’ export program into global markets outside the Asean region. The Ford Philippines plant was chosen from among several of Ford’s world-class engine facilities to supply engines to South Africa, recognizing its global competitiveness for both quality and cost efficiencies.
President Gloria Arroyo attended the plant’s ceremonial launch and was accompanied by a number of senior officials, including Department of Trade and Industry Secretary Peter Favila, Department of Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla, Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Angelo Reyes and the US acting deputy chief of mission to the Philippines, Rick Haynes, underscoring the plant’s significance to the Philippines and the ongoing collaboration between Ford and the Philippine government.
Secretary Favila thanked Ford for its confidence and continued investment in the Philippines, as well as its support of the Biofuels Act and energy policies of the government, which was the first in Asia to enact a legislative mandate for the use of alternative fuels.
“The Philippines government applauds Ford’s role in helping encourage investment in the local agro-industrial sector to produce and distribute alternative fuels. Ford continues to be a leading advocate for driving the advancement of the Philippines’ biofuels industry [and helping reduce our dependence on imported oil],” Favila said.
“This investment also points to Ford’s recognition of the Philippines’ as a globally competitive manufacturing base and strategic location to successfully expand its worldwide export program,” Favila said.
Production of FFV engines over the next five years is estimated at 105,000 engines valued at approximately P6.5 billion ($136 million), and has created around 100 skilled technical and support positions filled exclusively by Filipinos. Production at the Santa Rosa plant can be increased in the future to meet increasing demand for FFV engines.
“Ford appreciates the ongoing support of the Philippine government, and we’re proud of our collaborative work to lead the Philippines’ automotive industry in developing the country’s biofuels industry and implementation and use of alternative fuels,” commented Rick Baker, president of Ford Philippines.
“Our highly skilled Filipino workforce and ongoing human resources development and training are critical components of expanding of our regional FFV leadership right here in the Philippines,” Baker commented.
The world-class FFV engines will support the diversification of Ford Philippines’ export program into global markets outside the Asean region. Ford Philippines was awarded the business following a competitive global review, and based on the plant’s efficiency, productivity, quality and cost competitiveness.
The Santa Rosa FFV engines will be exported to South Africa for use in their production of Ford Focus. They will also be used in the local production of Ford Focus that are currently exported to Asean markets, including Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam, which were the first E20-capable FFV vehicles to be manufactured in the Asean region.
“This new facility will further strengthen the Philippines as a linchpin in our FFV strategy for the Asean region. We’ll continue to harmonize an approach to develop the use of biofuels by leveraging our global FFV technology leadership, and expand the availability of Ford’s FFV vehicles to meet growing demand in global markets,” said Dave Alden, vice president of Marketing, Sales and Service, Asia-Pacific and Africa.
Ford Motor Company is a global leader in FFV technology, with more than 2 million FFV’s on the road worldwide. The use of biofuels and development of FFV technology is part of Ford’s global effort to promote sustainable mobility.
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Michigan, manufactures or distributes automobiles in 200 markets across six continents. With about 260,000 employees and about 100 plants worldwide, the company’s core and affiliated automotive brands include Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lincoln, Mercury, Volvo and Mazda. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company.