Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Govt appeals decision lifting ban on imports of used vehicles

The government plans to elevate to the Supreme Court a recent ruling of the Court of Appeals that reversed a 2002 ban on the importation of used vehicles.

“We intend to elevate the case to the Supreme Court after losing before the appellate court,” a government source said.

He added Malacañang would file a motion for reconsideration and ask the High Court to review the Court of Appeal’s decision. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in 2002 imposed a ban on the importation of used vehicles.

In a three-page resolution penned by Justice Perlita Tria-Tirona, the CA’s fourth division ruled that government failed to present new evidence or arguments in its appeal that would warrant a reversal of the appellate court’s earlier decision.

“Evaluation of matters advanced by petitioners in their motion shows that except for one argument — that is, that there is a law that authorizes the President to prohibit and/or ban the importation of used motor vehicles — all other issues were squarely passed upon and exhaustively discussed in the decision sought to be reconsidered,” the CA said in its ruling.
Tria-Tirona of the CA’s fourth division upheld the appellate court’s Feb. 14 decision to declare EO 156, which bans second-hand imports, as unconstitutional.

EO 156 provides that the importation of all types of used motor vehicles is prohibited, except under certain conditions, like vehicle ownership by a returning resident or immigrant.

The importation ban is in line with government’s comprehensive industrial policy and local motor vehicle development program.

The Motor Vehicle Importers Association of Subic Bay Freeport Inc. opposed the order. The group had secured a temporary restraining order from the Olongapo City Regional Trial Court in January 2003, saying the EO was “arbitrary, unfair, unjust, unreasonable and offensive to substantive due process.”

But Malacañang insisted that Republic Act 7227, which created the Subic Special Economic Zone, should not be construed as “an open floodgate that would sanction the entry of all kinds of goods without any restrictions.”

It also argued that EO 226, or the Omnibus Investment Code of 1987, authorizes the President to prohibit the importation of used motor vehicles


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