The Philippine Independent Power Producers Association Inc. on Tuesday asked the government to consider removing import tariff for other coal sources to ease the impact of Indonesia’s ban on coal exports.
“We hope that the Philippine government will prioritize parallel discussions with its Indonesian counterparts regarding the issue and explore alternative measures, such as the removal of import tariff for other coal sources,” PIPPA said in a statement.
Indonesia, on Dec. 31, 2022, announced the banned coal exports amid concerns that a lower supply of coal at domestic power plants could lead to brownouts.
PIPPA, said, the coal export ban would have a short-term effect on the Philippine coal supply and it remained optimistic that the ban would be eventually lifted.
The group also assured the public that its member generators are compliant with the 30-day inventory levels set by the Department of Energy.
“PIPPA gencos [generation companies] intend to continuously serve the Philippine electricity demand amidst this temporary hurdle and hope that this will not extend beyond the first quarter of 2022,” PIPPA said.
“Given that it is our business to produce electricity, it is also in our best interest to continue operations even during the duration of the coal export ban in Indonesia,” it said.
PIPPA said it would also look for alternative coal sources to enable their plants to generate electricity.
The Philippines sourced 2.3 million metric tons monthly from Indonesia to fuel the country’s coal-fired power plants, according to DOE.
Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi earlier asked Indonesian Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Afirin Tasrif to lift the coal export ban.
Cusi stressed the healthy economic cooperation between the Philippines and Indonesia and that Indonesia’s recent policy would be “detrimental to economies that [currently] rely on coal-fired power generation systems like the Philippines.”
The DOE’s Electric Power Industry Management and Energy Resource Development Bureaus are scheduled to meet with the country’s coal power plant generators on Thursday to discuss potential strategies.