Senator Win Gatchalian has called on the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) to approve on time the power supply agreements (PSAs) between distribution utilities (DUs) and generation companies to ensure a steady supply of electricity at affordable rates for the benefit of consumers.
Gatchalian made the call following the recent issuance by the ERC of a competitive selection process (CSP) guidelines, which refers to the procurement mechanism for a DU to procure supply from generation companies through competitive bidding as mandated by the Department of Energy (DOE).
“We’re hoping that strict implementation of the bidding guidelines would result in the timely approval by the ERC of PSAs and help DUs to procure supply at the least cost for the benefit of consumers,” said Gatchalian. He noted that from 2003 to 2023, there were a total of 527 pending PSAs before the ERC. This year, there are 16 pending PSAs before the ERC, slightly lower from last year’s 18.
“Inaasahan natin na mas magiging maayos ang kalagayan ng suplay para sa mga kooperatiba at mga konsyumer,” he said.
The senator also emphasized that the ERC should immediately implement the provisions of the new power bidding guidelines issued by the agency to ensure compliance of distribution utilities and active participation of consumer groups.
According to him, the ERC should also encourage consumer groups to participate in the bidding through active monitoring, a privilege that wasn’t previously afforded them. This would help ensure transparency in the implementation of the CSP and enhance accountability in every PSAs.
“We need better accountability in the implementation of the PSAs, which means it is more difficult for generation companies to just walk away from the PSAs. This would help stabilize energy supply and eliminate surprises in terms of pricing,” Gatchalian explained.