Antitrust body says not notified of Udenna-Shell Malampaya deal due to Bayanihan 2


Posted at Oct 25 2021 04:21 PM

MANILA - The Philippine Competition Commission was not notified of Udenna's acquisition of the controlling stake in Malampaya from Shell due to the increased threshold under Bayanihan 2, its chairman Arsenio Balisacan said Monday. 

The body also only reviews the competition aspect of transactions and defers others to regulatory bodies, he said in a statement.

PCC issued the statement after Senator Sherwin Gatchalian said the DOE violated Presidential Decree 87 and its own department circular in approving Udenna's earlier purchase of Chevron's Malampaya stake. 

The deal approved by the DOE put energy security "at risk," Gatchalian said in an interview with ANC on Monday.

"In the first transaction by Udenna acquiring minority company interest from Chevron Malampaya in 2020, PCC found no competition issue then because Udenna was not engaged in the natural gas business," Balisacan said. 

"In Udenna's transaction to take over controlling stake in Malampaya from Shell this year, this was not notified to PCC due to the increase in notification threshold to P50 Billion under the Bayanihan 2," he added.

The Malampaya gas project supplies fuel to power plants that generate up to 40 percent of Luzon's energy requirements. 

Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, billionaire Dennis Uy and several others face graft complaints over the sale of Chevron’s stake in the Malampaya project to Udenna Corp due to alleged “undue injury to the Government."