The San Fernando Electric Light and Power Company (SFELAPCO) said the decision to implement its pending power supply agreement (PSA) is part of its commitment to provide stable and affordable power supply to its customers.
Jose Lazatin, SFELAPCO senior vice president and general manager, revealed during the hearing of the Senate Committee on Energy, chaired by Senator Raffy Tulfo, on the company’s implementation of its PSA with AP Renewables Inc. (APRI) that has been pending from ERC for ten years.
Lazatin explained that SFELAPCO entered into the said power agreement with APRI on December 5, 2012, and applied for its approval with the ERC on January 2, 2013. However, the application hasn’t been acted upon by the ERC until now.
“Because of this, we were compelled to implement the new PSA. This, Honorable Chair, is still in adherence with the ERC Guidelines,” Lazatin told the Committee.
“We made this decision with the best interest of our consumers in mind who have benefitted from the lowest electricity rates in the area,” he added.
SFELAPCO said this decision paid off as the company’s consumers have been spared from paying for more expensive power supply from the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WSEM).
The move also helped keep electricity rates low and stable amid a global energy crisis, Lazatin pointed out.
“Hindi po ito naging madali dahil napakarami pong challenges ang kinakaharap ng energy industry. Pero lagi po namin inuuna kung ano ang makakabuti para sa aming mga consumers,” he added.
Lazatin said the company is ready to sit down and work together with concerned stakeholders to lower electricity rates.
“We are willing to participate in a discussion on how we can all work together to lower electricity rates. Sana po ay matulungan po ninyo kaming maipagpatuloy ang pagbibigay ng quality service sa abot-kayang presyo sa aming mga kababayan sa Pampanga,” he said.
The company also expressed optimism that the hearing will help will pave way for the development of more policies that will benefit the energy industry.
Meanwhile, the Department of Energy (DOE) said its decision to approve the SFELAPCO’s application for Emergency Power Supply Agreement (EPSA) spared Fernandinos from experiencing a dark Christmas season last year.
“Isa po sa konsiderasyon na binigay ng DOE, which took us a lot of discussion is kung hindi sila direct member sa WESM at magte-terminate by December 25 iyong kanilang PSA, wala po silang mapagkukunan ng supply,” said DOE Assistant Secretary Mario Marasigan.
Marasigan said the DOE issued its six-month exemption on December 23, adding “Magpapasko pa naman po noon. Ayaw po naming mawalan ng supply ng kuryente sa San Fernando.”