TAGUIG CITY –The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) recognizes the country’s robust automotive industry as one of the key drivers of the national economy, showcasing the exceptional skills of the Filipino workforce, according to Secretary Fred Pascual.

“For over six decades, MMPC has created employment opportunities for Filipinos, significantly aiding our nation’s progress,” said Pascual.

From L to R: MMPC incoming President and CEO Imaeda Ritsu, outgoing President and CEO Hara Takeshi, Santa Rosa City Mayor Arlene Arcillas, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the Philippines Endo Kazuya, DTI Secretary Fred Pascual, Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) Director General Tereso O. Panga, and MMPC Chairman Hirakata Noriaki

The DTI secretary made this statement during the Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corporation (MMPC) President and CEO Turnover Ceremony on April 22.

Established in 1963 in Cainta, Rizal, and later relocating to Santa Rosa, Laguna, MMPC is distinguished as the longest-operating automotive company in the country.

Its active involvement in major initiatives such as the Motor Vehicle Development Program and the Comprehensive Automotive Resurgence Strategy has bolstered local production and employment opportunities.

The company has also contributed to the country’s industrial development through its iconic Mitsubishi models like the L300, Lancer, and Montero, supporting the logistics operations of various Filipino enterprises.

From L to R: MMPC Chairman Noriaki Hirakata, DTI Secretary Fred Pascual, Executive Advisory Council (EAC) members Juan B. Santos and Atty. Adrian Cristobal Jr.

Meanwhile, during the turnover ceremony, Secretary Pascual expressed his appreciation to MMPC’s outgoing president, Mr. Takeshi Hara, and welcomed Ritsu Imaeda as the company’s new president and CEO.

Following the leadership change in MMPC, the government plans to reduce its reliance on imported oil and improve the environment by aligning its industry players with the Electric Vehicle Industry Development Act. 

These efforts align with the Marcos Jr. administration’s vision to foster a competitive and technologically advanced automotive industry.

The event also underscored the robust economic ties and cultural exchange between the Philippines and Japan, exemplifying a strong partnership that has brought substantial economic benefits and technological advancements to both nations.

“Today, we celebrate not just a transition of leadership but a renewed commitment to innovation and excellence that will drive the future of the automotive industry in the Philippines. Together, we will work towards realizing the vision of a ‘Bagong Pilipinas,’ where Japanese innovation meets Filipino ingenuity,” said the trade chief.

This economic alliance was further highlighted during a recent trilateral meeting in Washington, D.C., involving the Philippines, Japan, and the United States—aimed at strengthening trade and economic cooperation. ♦

Date of release: 23 April 2024