Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines Inc. took over Wednesday the operations of the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market, in place of Philippine Electricity Market Corp.
“The IEMOP fulfills the promise of Epira [Electric Power Industry Reform Act] to foster competition in the WESM through an independent market operator,” IEMOP president Francis Saturnino Juan said.
“Our existence and our service usher in the electricity market’s inevitable transformation to a more competitive state for the ultimate benefit of the electricity consumers,” Juan said.
IEMOP said this was in compliance with the mandate of Republic Act No. 9136, or the Epira law, for the WESM, the country’s trading floor of electricity, which should be run by an independent operator.
IEMOP is a non-stock, non-profit corporation governed by a professional board of directors composed of individuals not affiliated with any of the electric companies that trade in the WESM.
The IEMOP carries out the mandate to pursue the WESM objective to have a transparent, fair, competitive and reliable market for the trading of electricity throughout the Philippines.
As market operator, IEMOP is bound to strictly comply with the Epira law, its implementing rules and regulations, the WESM rules and other related issuances of the Department of Energy.
IEMOP facilitates the registration and participation of generating companies, distribution utilities, directly-connected customers or bulk users, suppliers and contestable customers in the WESM.
It also determines the hourly schedules of generating units that will supply electricity to the grid, as well as the corresponding spot market prices of electricity via its Market Management System. Moreover, it manages the metering, billing, settlement and collection of spot trading amounts for the benefit of the market participants.
IEMOP and PEMC earlier executed the operating agreement to formalize the transfer of all functions, assets and liabilities associated with market operations from PEMC to the IEMOP.
“From the very start of my term as DoE Secretary, it was the department’s priority for PEMC to be independent from the DoE and to create a fully-independent market operator. Bearing the public’s interest in mind, I believe this transition will expedite the growth of the country’s electricity market,” Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said.
The Epira requires PEMC to divest itself of this function in favor of a separate entity that is independent of the market participants.
Cusi said while PEMC and the IMO would be independent from the government, the Energy Department would maintain oversight of the WESM operations.