M'nao power generator to refund consumers

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Friday, August 29, 2014


A POWER generator in Mindanao said it will refund its consumers following an Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) ruling.

Therma Marine Inc. (TMI), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Aboitiz Power announced Friday that it has already set aside P12.695 million for refund to Mindanao consumers.

The June 16, 2014 ERC refund order covers the difference between the provisional rate approved by the commission and the final but lower ancillary charge.

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TMI and the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) entered into an Ancillary Service Purchase Agreement (ASPA) between 2010 to 2011.

The ERC further ordered the refund to take effect in 12 months or P1.057 million per month starting the next billing cycle. ERC estimated the impact to Mindanao consumers will be around P0.0015/kwh reduction.

The refund will be course through the NGCP.

"We will abide by the ruling of the honorable commission and we will coordinate with the NGCP in order to effect the refund as soon as possible," said TMI president and COO Jovy P. Batiquin.

Although the ERC ordered TMI to refund NGCP to the amount of P392.577 million, but TMI manifested that the grid operator NGCP has pending uncollected payables of some P379.881 million. This leaves the net refund amounting to P12.695 million.

The ASPA between NGCP and Therma Marine ended in 2011. Ancillary power maintains the integrity of the grid and critical to the grid for voltage regulation, emergency backup and peaking power.

Therma Marine operates two oil-fired barges in Nasipit, Agusan del Norte and Maco, Compostela Valley province. The two barges combine for 200 MW.

It serves more than 20 electric cooperatives and distribution utilities in Mindanao, helping them cushion the effects of the power shortage in Mindanao.

“TMI’s operational cost is 90 percent for fuel, which is a pass-on-through charge to consumers. The remaining 10-percent is for the salaries of our employees, spare parts, insurance, maintenance costs and capital recovery," Batiquin explained.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 29, 2014.

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