Households to save over P2,000 a year using Malampaya fund — Senate energy committee
The Senate committee on energy was looking into the possibility of using the P204 billion Malampaya Fund to reduce the universal charge (UC) and allow households to save as much as P2,033.76 annually.
The committee took up Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto’s Senate Bill No. 924 which proposes to allocate the national government share from the Malampaya National Gas Project for the payment of the stranded contract costs (SCC) and stranded debts (SD) of the National Power Corporation (Napocor).
Applying the remaining P 204 billion Malampaya Fund would avoid an increase of P0.8474 kilowatt-hour (kWh) in retail power rates, according to data presented by Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation (PSALM).
Proponents and supporters of the bill believe this will result in annual savings of P2,033.76 for an average household consuming 200 kWh per month.
“These savings are enough for an underprivileged household to buy two additional sacks of rice every year,” said Senator Win Gatchalian, the chairman of the Senate energy panel.
Gatchalian said he supports the measure in principle but noted that further study should be conducted on how much of the remaining funds can be used for the proposed program.
The senator also scolded the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) for several delays in the approval of SCC and SD rate applications.
PSALM claimed that the delays brought on an added cost of P34.78 billion being shouldered by consumers. /vvp
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