The license plate backlog of the LTO has been a problem for so many motor vehicle owners for a very long time now. In April, the agency released a microsite where owners can see if their replacement (not new) plates are ready. In May, they said that they are confident that their new machine can produce 5,000+ vehicle plates and 3,000+ plates per day. And then in July, they said that a budget of PHP 6.83B is needed to address the backlog.
LTO’s license plate backlog = 2.3 million pairs
Fast forward to today, there is both good and bad news.
The good news is that the LTO has again committed to address and roll out up to 90% of the license plate backlogs by the end of wait for it 2023. Another bit of good news is that the requested budget has been given, but only a portion.
Here’s the (somewhat) bad news: out of the total PHP 6.83B requested, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has turned over PHP 4.7B, which still leaves a pretty hefty amount left.
As of this posting, there are still about 2.3 million pairs of license plate backlogs that are being waited on by vehicle owners. Added to that is an estimated 11.5 million motorcycle plates that have yet to be released.
“Right now, we have already extended the operating hours of the LTO license plate manufacturing plant. It now operates even on Saturdays so that it can produce more replacement plates and reduce the backlog,” – Teofilo Guadiz III, LTO Chief Assistant Secretary
The production of license plates is a continuous operation, and for the plates that might not be rolled out this year, Guadiz said that the LTO will seek help from private companies to hit their 90% target by the end of 2023.
Based on the LTO’s data, more or less 300,000 pairs of replacement plates have already been produced as of October 3, 2022. The production of the said license plates began in May of this year. Take note that this license plate backlog is for replacement plates, as the production of new plates for brand new vehicles.
For those who are asking about the collected fees for new/replacement plates, Guadiz emphasized that those funds are deposited into the National Treasury daily, and should the need arise, those funds will be asked for from Congress or the DBM.
Regarding the license plate backlog for motorcycles, they are prioritizing in giving rear plates along with front decals for now. The LTO Chief explained, “Inuna na po namin muna ‘yung back plates [We are prioritizing rear plates]. For the front, the thrust of the previous administration which we are adapting now is gagamit kami ng decal [to use decals]. We are anticipating the passage of the new law, so sa ngayon po [for now], we will just address first the back plates, hindi muna yung sa harapan [not the front plates for now].”
Do you think the LTO can do it? Do you think this problem could have been avoided from the start? We understand how frustrating the situation is, but the fact of the matter is that the general public can only wait. Tell us what your thoughts are and how you feel about this in the comments below. It’s a very touchy issue, and your voice matters.