SRPI, intervenors shun talks on power sales agreement PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 10 July 2013 14:30

All possibilities leading to solving some contentious issues besetting the controversial power sales agreement (PSA), an accord, that will govern the city’s electricity rates three years from now, are totally shelved.

This, after prime movers of a proposed 100-megawatt coal-fired power plant and the group of intervenors claiming to represent the city’s electric consumers, have  shunned all talks out of disappointment, involving these contentious issues.

For its part, San Ramon Power Inc.  (SRPI), decided for good not to talk anymore with the intervenors to settle things relative to PSA after the latter allegedly snubbed their scheduled July 5 meeting,which would have accordingly been significant for all parties involved.

SRPI and the Zamboanga City Electric Cooperative, Inc. (Zamcelco) have jointly applied with the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) for a proposed electric rate, which the cooperative will charge electric consumers once it starts buying power from SRPI’s  coal-fired power plant in 2016, and onward for 25 years.

However, the city’s business sector represented by businessmen Pedro Rufo Soliven, Efren Wee, and Lawyer Carl Andrew Rubio were unanimous in the opinion that such power pricing, if not carefully watched and scrutinized prior to its implementation, would be detrimental to the electric consumers, who would have to carry the burden in paying for it for two and half decades.

Last July 5 scheduled meeting, would have been the second, after ERC Commissioner Gloria Taruc decided to forego with the July 1 committee hearing at ERC central office in Manila, and advised all parties involved to have all unsettled issues ironed out in the local level, to avoid further debates in the next hearing.

None of the contending parties however admitted to have faulted, leading to  July 1 hearing’s postponement.

“They (the intervenors) did not even give us prior notice that they would not appear in the July 5 meeting, otherwise, we would just have canceled our reservation with the venue. We spent so much for nothing there,”,complained an SRPI official,

On the part of the intervenors, Soliven said that they are no longer interested in meeting with SRPI and Zamcelcoto talk about the PSA issue.

“We will just send ERC our position paper, where all our contentions, disagreement, and questions will be properly raised. As of now, there are more questions that answers in this controversial PSA,” Soliven explained.

SRPI on the other hand said that neither them would want to face the intervenors locally, “but if so advised by ERC, we are willing to answer their (intervenors’) position paper, said another SRPI official.

Meanwhile, Mayor Beng Climaco yesterday expressed hope that all contending parties could arrive at a middle ground or ‘win-win solution’, for an acceptable power rate in the future. —  Philip Abuy