The Energy Regulatory Commission said Thursday it will review and approve some of the pending applications by National Power Corp. for universal charge for missionary electrification amounting to P0.15 per kilowatt-hour this year.
“Like what what we committed to Napocor, we will help them resolve 10-year-old cases pending with the commission,” ERC chairperson Monalisa Dimalanta said at the sidelines of Pandesal Forum in Quezon City.
Dimalanta said NPC had filed eight UCME applications over the last 10 years, and the regulator would resolve two cases every quarter starting this March “until we get to the P0.15 that they can use to buy fuel to provide electricity to the islands.”
She said NPC was seeking an approval to recover P30 billion from the UCME.
Dimalanta said NPC needed funds to pay for the fuel of its generator sets because the company had been facing budget constraints since last year amid high diesel prices.
“NPC asked us for additional collection [from the UCME] so it can buy fuel to provide electricity for the islands,” she said.
NPC warned that would implement reduction of electricity service in Small Power Utilities Group over fuel supply shortage and the delay in UCME subsidy payment.
The company, however, deferred the implementation of the proposed reduction of operating hours in March following discussions with stakeholders and customers.
NPC said it was waiting for the sovereign guarantee from the Office of the President for its loan application with Land Bank of the Philippines.
It is also waiting for additional funding from the universal charge for missionary electrification which the ERC committed to act on.
It is also scheduled to make a presentation with the Development Budget Coordinating Committee for the funding shortfall.
NPC operates 156 plants, including 84 which provide 24/7 supply and the rest with only 16 hours and below.