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Cusi brings electricity trading closer to autonomy

Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi on Monday welcomed the first election of members of the Philippine Electricity Market Corporation (PEMC) board of directors, a step that moves the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) closer to attaining Independent Market Operator (IMO) status.

Fifteen board members, including 11 sectoral representatives, were elected during PEMC’s Annual General Membership Meeting at the Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria.

The elected board members were Emmanuel V. Rubio (SN Aboitiz Power), Victor Emmanuel B. Santos Jr. (First Gen), Elenita Go (SMC Global Power), Juan Eugenio L. Roxas (FDC Utilities, Inc.), Rolando M. Cagampan (Meralco), Allan L. Laniba (LEYECO III), Felino Herbert Palpallatoc Agdigos (Ilocos Norte Electric Cooperative), Gilbert A. Pagobo (Mactan Electric Company, Inc.), Noel Villas Aboboto (Team Energy), Atty. Ronald Dylan P. Concepcion (National Grid Corporation of the Philippines), and Atty. Francis Saturnino C. Juan (Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines).

Four new independent directors were also elected namely, Rauf A. Tan, Atty. Oscar E. Ala, Jesus Lim Arranza, and Peter Leslie Wallace.

“It has been a fruitful two years. Now we look forward to a new era, as PEMC’s elected representatives take over the reins of governing the electricity market,” Cusi said in a speech during the event.

The election of a new PEM Board brings the industry a step closer to the long-delayed transition to the IMO.

Cusi has remained firm in calling for the IMO’s establishment, which is already overdue for more than a decade from what the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 originally required.

While PEMC and the IMO will be independent from the government, the DOE will maintain oversight of the WESM operations.

“The DOE’s involvement with the WESM needs to be close enough for the Department to understand key developments, while keeping enough distance from the market’s daily functions. The Energy Department will remain the ultimate guardian of WESM rules and manuals. Together with the Energy Regulatory Commission, we will protect our consumers against industry breaches and anti-competitive behavior,” Cusi said.

Under the transition plan approved earlier this year, the IMO will manage operations of the WESM while PEMC will remain the spot market’s governing body. DOE


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