Aboitiz sees power woes worsening in PH

By Coco Alcuaz, ANC

Posted at May 20 2014 08:35 PM | Updated as of May 21 2014 09:54 PM


MANILA – If you think we have power problems now, the Aboitiz group, one of the big three in the industry, said they will be worse in about three years.

That's because planned power plants such as its 600-megawatt project in Subic have been blocked by environmental, indigenous and other groups.

"I really think that a lot of the projects that we are anticipating and planned on building are being delayed, and our reserves are going down. So I think if new capacity is not built soon, I think we may have some problems by the end of 2017, 2018," said Erramon Aboitiz, head of the family-controlled company.
"Our Subic plant, for example, in partnership with Meralco was originally supposed to come in 2015, and right now we haven't even started because we're waiting for the final decision of the Supreme Court. It's changed, and I think over the next few years, reserve is going to get tighter and tighter, it's not looking good," he added.

Aboitiz opposes the review of the power industry law that some groups called for after the unprecedented spike in generation charges late last year.

Aboitiz said while there are three big power producers including Aboitiz, they make up just 50 percent of total capacity.

He said while cross-ownership between generating companies and distribution companies is a valid concern, the solution is to rush implementation of EPIRA's open access provision.

He said that will allow consumers to choose their power generating companies instead of leaving that to distribution companies.

"There are a lot of things we can do to solve the problems we’ve been experiencing without touching the law, but basically changing some of the rules, and fully implementing what EPIRA was envisioned to implement," said Aboitiz.