Aquino: Higher Mindanao power rates inevitable



President Benigno Aquino III FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—Already grappling with “rotating” brownouts every day, millions of Mindanao residents will eventually have to pay more for their electricity consumption, President Benigno Aquino III said on Tuesday.

The President said the government might tap diesel-powered generating plants to boost the power supply in the region to address the power deficiency between now and 2015.

Mr. Aquino, however, conceded that the mix of hydro and diesel would inevitably increase power rates.

“The power rates will go up in Mindanao because the choice is a higher power rate or no power. And many of those we’ve spoken to understood the necessity for higher rates, and they’re amenable to this, instead of no power at all,” he told reporters at a Pasay City bus terminal on Tuesday.

In the face of the rotating brownouts in Mindanao, Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla presented a plan to Malacañang that entails procuring “modular” diesel-powered plants as a “stop-gap measure” until 2015 when the coal-fired plants kick in, the President said.

“These diesel power plants are seen as the quickest—they can be set up in as early as six months and the maximum is one year,” Mr. Aquino said.

The idea, he said, was for the government to help the distribution utilities purchase the generating sets.

“By 2015, we expect the problem to largely go away—by that time, we’ll have good surplus. That’s the time the power plants go online,” he said. “About 300 megawatts of coal-fired power plants will come online by 2015, and there will be more after that up to 2017.”

Mr. Aquino ruled out anew resorting to emergency powers to address the outages.

For about a month now, Misamis Occidental, Lanao del Norte and Iligan City, among others, have been experiencing two rounds of brownouts daily, with each round lasting two to six hours.

The Misamis Occidental 2 Electric Cooperative Inc. said the outages were caused by power supply deficiencies from the Agus and Pulangi hydroelectric plants operated by the National Power Corp. (Napocor).

Officials, however, said the long brownouts in Mindanao were an offshoot of Napocor’s action to conserve power for the midterm elections.

At present, Mindanao has a power shortfall of 294 megawatts. The demand is at 1,157 MW while the actual supply is only 863 MW.

Officials and industry players have blamed the power outages on the lack of power infrastructure in the region.

The President, however, assured Mindanao of an adequate supply during the May 13 elections.

“There is an assurance that the elections will not be affected. There will be power for all of the precincts so they can transmit the results of the elections,” he said.

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  • doublecross

    commercialized electricity could lead to corrupt attainment.

  • Weder-Weder Lang

    “Higher Mindanao power rates inevitable because I owe it to the Aboitiz oligarchs.” — Aquino

    • rodben

      Higher electricity rate in Mindanao is inevitable…the style during Cory time and Ramos give a go signal to privatization.. ABOITIZ become a Billionaire…poor Pinoys become poorer….now if Mindanaon’s pay 600.Pesos/month after privatize surely they will pay more than 2,500Pesos same2 in Luzon…in 70’s Philippines is the lowest electricity rate among Asian kya so many industries are coming in and so many Philippine industrial products exporting abroad kya kilala ang Philippine made that time…now replace by Vietnam and Thailand exempt India and China from food stuffed to electronics kasi electricity rate nila ay mura even the salary of workers are higher than Pinas…

      • Jose Laxa

        In the 70’s Philippines is very poor; the sickest man of Asia. During the time or Ramos our electricity went up and in Gloria’s time our electricity become the highest in Asia.

    • kismaytami

      Siguro, pati SMC ni tito danding papasok na rin! Kamag-anak Inc.

    • Carlos PFA

      Hydro Power is cheap – not to mention a god source of clean, renewable energy. But unless there are enough large rivers and waterfalls, Hydro Power alone won’t be enough to power Mindanao – with or without corruption.

      • Jose Laxa

        And please include trees / forest around the large rivers and waterfalls. Without the trees the large rivers and waterfalls will dry up.

      • Weder-Weder Lang

        Meron pa namang geothermal kapatid.


      aboitiz does not monopolize the power industry in mindanao. alcantara is a power producer, consunji supplies & operate coal mines. both are following the rules of the game from the dept of energy. perhaps you have someone in mind that can help alleviate the situation sans the blame game.

      • Weder-Weder Lang

        Mar Roxas.


    when it comes to immediate supply of electric power, NOTHING BEATS A PORTABLE DIESEL GENERATOR SET. 1.5 TO 2.0 MW diesels are available in the market now, as in TODAY. i think the govt. can help in the procurement for the cooperatives. CUMMINS QSK60 or CAT 3516HD are the more popular brand/models. these can be supplied TRAILER-MOUNTED for MOBILITY. I think each costs US$ 500K for 1.5MW tax-duty free.

    • Carlos PFA

      Given the shortfall… we’d have to get 147 so of those… @ US$500K each, and assuming 40.6 pesos to a dollar, that would be Php 2.9841 Billion?

      I’m not against it (as if I had them money), but they would (should?) be unnecessary in about 2-3 years. And it might not be the best solution if the diesel power plants turn out to be cheaper than Php 2.9B…


        i can agree with you in some ways, but given the IMMEDIATE NEEDS, there’s nothing better than portable diesel plants. wind, coal, solar and hydro produces cheap & renewable power, but the govt. wants it privatized or owned & operated privately since govt are lousy businessmen but topnotch grifters. i hope this time, outside or foreign aid is a blessing to cure this malady.

  • Maldi2

    After 3 miserable years into lousy governance, Panot still unable to solve the power crisis in Mindanao. Mas lalong pahirap at palala pa ang sitwasyon. Ayos na sana yong mga power barge ng last Admin, eh keso puro puno sa duda at pinawalang bisa ang mga contracts doon na wala namang ginawang alternatibong paraan. Napaka booba talaga!

    • poltergeist_fuhrer

      after 3 years…si gma ang may kasalanan…

  • ealicer


    • Jose Laxa

      To maintained the Hydro complexes, the surrounding forest and trees should be preserved and in those areas a total log ban should be in effect; but alas for almost 10 since Gloria’s time the forest covers that surround those Hyrdro’s complexes become thinner, therefore less water for these hydro and we cannot build any Hydro with less water. Again a total log ban and a true reforestation should be done in Mindanao, by removing Gloria’s presidential decrees allowing managed deforestation in those areas

  • echelon_guy

    CORY to NOYNOY….As the mother bestowed to her son..”Let there be DARKNESS in this country..” So, the son for the love of his mother,followed her legacy…BROWNOUTS!!… as the holy bible says…”SON, behold thy mother..”

  • Ommm

    Sounds much like simple extortion and excuses. Why are the power rates 5X higher here than in N. America when the generation methods are very similar?

    How can the government guarantee full power on election day yet fail to provide it daily?… electricity is generated on demand and cannot be stored for future use… how absurd…

  • aspirin200

    I think the primary reason why companies like to Aboitiz’s wants to take over the Mindanao hydro power plants instead of developing their own is simple. Unlike developing their own power generating capacities, which will take time to construct, set up and operate, existing power generating assets can already earn revenue on the very day of the take over. It is also easier, cheaper and will take a shorter period of time to repair and upgrade than to start from scratch. This is a very sound business model.

    If there should be privatization of hydro generating assets in Mindanao, ownership should be limited to Mindanao stakeholders. A grand cooperative or corporation could be organized where Mindanao consumers can invest money to pay to PSALM for the hydro power generating assets. A combination of loans can be accessed by the entity and guaranteed by the Philippine government.

    This is one way the people of Mindanao can take responsibility of not only ensuring adequate supply for the future, but also make sure that the power generated is affordable and where costs are reflective of real and not profit motivated accounting mumbo jumbo.

  • jack_bagbaga2011

    he is now the spokesperson of these private power utilities. tubong-lugaw na naman ang mga kikitain nitong mga kaibigan ni pnoy

  • billy gunner

    present power rates are already outrageous and aquino is saying if you want 24-hour power supply you need to pay more. projects that could alleviate power rates should have been one of his priorities and not merely hunt for past admin’s mistakes! wtf!

  • Jaime O. de Vera

    Intramuros chinese tourist crisis, Sabah crisis & now Mindanao power crisis. All these happened because Abnoy does not know how to handle crisis. He is obsessed in always blaming GMA&her allies for almost 3 years now. He is blinded by his hatred & arbitrariness towards GMA.

  • poltergeist_fuhrer

    DEJA VU…sa panahon ng kanyang nanay, sangkatutak ang brown-out…ngaun na naman si PENOY…

    yan ang TUWAD NA DAAN…

    busying busy kasi si penoy sa pangangampanya…ang kanyang trabaho ngaun ay campaign manager, hindi presidente ng pilipinas…kawawang mindanao…pasensiya na kayo, NOYNOYING kasi ang pangulo…

  • disqusted0fu

    Rates of pretty much all commodities these days are getting higher and higher, while the salaries stay the same, and the availability of jobs get lower, which makes up to the 25million poor Filipinos. The statement of a robust economy for the Philippines is simply a joke.

    • Lorebea Tamparong

      I strongly agree…and I also heard that PNOY doesn’t want to upgrade the salary of government employees while demanding them to perform high in their duties…Sino ba ang may ganang magtrabaho kung ang sweldo mo ay kakarampot lamang habang ang mga bilihin ay nagtataasan ng presyo…At saka sorry na rin sa MAGNA CARTA for the POOR…kahit pa sabihing may budget yan, hindi rin yan pipirmahan ng mahal nating Pangulo…Any plan to immediately uplift the worse economic condition of the poor Filipino worker will not be approved by PNOY like salary increase and Magna Carta for the Poor…Sising-sisi ako kung ba’t ko pa sya ibinoto…

      • disqusted0fu

        Despite all that, Pnoy still continues to brainwash the public that we are his bosses, even when it evidently shows that we are not. He is demanding government employees to perform high in their duties when he is showing a sub-par performance while him and his KKKs are racking up the wealth of the country.

  • pedrongbata

    That’s what you get voting a special child to the presidency !!!!!

  • Adrian John Ladaga

    I dubbed thee, Team Malaysia a new name: TEAM BROWNOUT!

  • riccisan

    Pnoy: raise power prices or there is no power.
    Mindanao farmers: thats ok. we’ll also raise food prices or there is no food for NCR.

  • RyanE

    I think we got two reasons for all this power problem. First, people in Malacanang and our technocrats lack foresight and are just reactionary. Second, people running Napocor are incompetent and corrupt.

    DOE should be revamped and privatization of all Napocor’s generating units should be done soonest.

  • pubringjuandelacruz

    he is so dumb. that he can’t even protect the honor of his father regarding the monopoly of basic needs of the people. that is why the poor are getting poorer and the rich are getting richer.

    greed is what makes the world go round not love. the latter is just for fictional books which contains heroes and fairies.

  • Cool LahgotzMO

    Panot.. why not rehabilitate those hydro power plants which were purposely left deteriorated so that the Aboitiz power barges will be used? You think Mindanaoans are stupid? That’s what we get for electing an Oligarch ! Blame it all to stupid and immature electorates. P500 lang ang katumbas para maloklok sa position itong mga p3steng politiko. Lahat damay sa kamangmangan ng karamihan.

  • Lorebea Tamparong

    Yun lang ang pwedeng masabi ng mahal nating Pangulo…!!! Niloloko lang tau ng BOSS natin…Hindi naman talaga solusyon yan eh…Problema pa rin…Bakit kaya wlang gana itong si PNOY pag brownout na sa Mindanao ang pag-uusapan??? Bakit parang wla na siyang maisip na ibang paraan samantalang kung sa pag indorso sa Team PNOY nya at sa pag tuligsa sa mga kalaban niya ang pag-uusapan ay masyado cyang magaling…ANAK NG ______ !!! Di ko maintindihan ang Presidenteng ito!!! sabi mo PNOY BOSS mo kami kaya wag mo kaming pahirapan!!! Hindi biro ang mawalan ng kuryente ng maraming oras araw-araw…!!!

  • poltergeist_fuhrer

    after 3 years of penoys presidency, si gma dapat sisihin….yan na naman ang maririnig ninyo dito sa mga yellow ribbons…nasaan kaya sila ngaun?bakasyon na ba sa malakanyang call center? ang aga naman…

  • poltergeist_fuhrer

    i remember berevozsky story where he loot russian coffer after the fall of ussr…

    now it is aboitiz, with the help of a noynoying…super yaman na ng mga aboitiz…tnx aquino…siya lang ang boss mo…

  • Brax82

    Mas masahol pa sa mga sindikato ang maginang Aquino… Mga pinaglihi sa Brownout!

  • Batang Altura

    ano ba bago kay P-noy pagupong apg-upo taasan agd presyo ng bilihin, bigas ,asukal , mantika at iba pang pangunahing bilihin. ang bigas panohon ni GMA may mabibili kapang 24/kg. sinandomeng na , ngaun pinakamura sinanadomeng 36/kg. NFA rice may mabibili kang 21/kg nngaun 28-29/kg. tapos nagmamaliki si Kalbo na malaki na daw iniunlad natin. mayayamang negosyantelang ang umunlad. eto na naman ang power sa Mindanao matagal na itong sisabi na pag-handaan wlwng ginawa aya di na maiiwasan ang pag-taas..naku P-noy masakit na ulo ng boss mo..

  • hu_yu

    aquino inutil! magdadagdag ka pa ng kalbaryo mo sa mga boss ng mindanao! mag resign ka na lang kung ganyan style mo!

  • go88

    “You’ll have to pay more in order to get electricity”

    What a brillian leader you are ABNOY! The Aboitzes must be proud of you ….

    Now Mr. President, what is about your solution to end poverty?

    “Send more OFW abroad”

  • agustin

    If PH is known as the highest in Asia in terms of electricity cost, then locally the mindanao area is the highest in terms of electricity cost. is Pnoy really for pinoy?

  • Brax82

    Walang masabe ang mga yellow morons tungkol dito kahit binabayaran pa sila ng malake ni Carandang.

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