A POWER generator company based in Manila has expressed its intention to supply the needed services of Cagayan de Oro Power and Light Company's (Cepalco) power consumers in the city.

This, as the 15-year contract of Cepalco with its power generator, Mindanao Energy (Minergy), has expired on June 30, 2010

Therma Marine Inc. (TMI), a power generating company that uses power barges, has already submitted its application to the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC).

Click here for Election 2010 updates

Minergy has also submitted its proposal to the ERC for a renewal of its contract with Cepalco.

In a phone interview, Sarge R. Sarmiento, a representative of TMI, claimed they intend to supply Cepalco's power needs at much lower rates compared with Minergy.

However, he said the application has yet to be approved by ERC.

Sarmiento said they are also waiting for the documents from both Cepalco and Minergy to be submitted to ERC.

"We want to know what is behind (the reduction), how they came up with their rates," Sarmiento said, though he refused to give figures of their proposal for supposed "lower rates."

But lawyer Ranulfo M. Ocampo, counsel who handles the contract renewal between Minergy and Cepalco, said TMI is questioning Minergy's proposal for a 12-year contract renewal.

He said TMI questioned the credibility of the proposed renewal of contract by Cepalco and Minergy.

Noel J. Salvanera, ERC's hearing officer, said TMI applied two months ago but needs to justify that it is better than Minergy.

On Friday, the ERC conducted a public hearing to settle the conflict between Minergy and TMI.

Richard S. Ratunil, Cepalco manager, stood as witness in the hearing, who was asked to provide the necessary documents that would show chances for their contract with Minergy to be renewed.

A source inside Cepalco who refused to be identified said TMI had a proposal for Cepalco to transfer its contract with them, claiming the company has the lowest rates on power bills.

"But the ERC's evaluation committee found that TMI has higher rates compared to Minergy. Minergy said it even intends to reduce rates in the coming days," the source said.

However, the source added it's up to the ERC to decide on the matter.