Energy Chief Resigns, Cites IPP Cost Reduction
Byline: MYRNA M. VELASCO
Energy Secretary Vincent S. Perez has already tendered his courtesy resignation upon the mandate of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to give the incoming administration the free hand to choose the members of his or her Cabinet.
As he bowed out of office, Perez has disclosed that the recently-concluded renegotiation of contracts with the independent power producers (IPPs) has resulted in savings of as much as $1.3 billion; and is seen to bring about R0.098 per kilowatt hour (kwh) average reduction in future power rates for end-consumers.
The outgoing energy chief has listed such among his primary accomplishments during his reign at the energy department.
On top of this, he also identified other concerns; which he claimed are part of the successes attained during his stint. These include the initial sale of the Talomo hydro power plant of state-owned National Power Corporation (NPC), electrification of remote barangays and mediating in the row over proposed transfer of the Pandacan depots.
Three more power plants are scheduled to be put in the auction block by the end of the month and early June.
During his watch as the energy head, the countrys level of barangay electrification rose to 90 percent compared with previous administrations. To date, a total of 37,907 barangays nationwide have been energized.
The power crisis in the Visayas was also averted as several power plants were put in place.
Among which were the transfer of the 110 megawatt (MW) Pinamucan power plant in Dingle, Iloilo and the installation of additional capacity in Capiz; Sta.
Barbara, Iloilo; Mindoro; Marinduque; Puerto Princesa, Palawan; and Bantayan Island, Cebu.
Likewise, the energy secretary said he has successfully mediated between the Manila city government and the oil companies over the Pandacan oil depot, leading the creation of the Pandacan linear park; and the shareholders settlement between the Garcia and the Aboitiz groups over the future of Visayan Electric Company (VECO). …