Balance between environment and power costs important, says MVP

Businessman Manuel Pangilinan on Tuesday said that the government’s plan to have public-private talks with the power industry companies is vital in producing a clear energy mix policy in the country.

Speaking during the BusinessWorld Economic Forum, Pangilinan said the high price of power should also be addressed alongside the determining the country’s new energy mix.

“I think Sec. Dominguez is right. It has to be a consultation between government [and private sector] to communicate what the government sees is right for the country as they have that broad perspective, not the private sector,” Pangilinan said.

He said a new fuel mix will also drive the price of power, and a balance between protecting the environment and maintaining low power costs is important.

“Clearly, there’s an imperative of protecting the environment and…minimizing the impact on the pricing of power,” he said.

Pangilinan is the chairman of the Philex Mining Corporation and the Manila Electric Company (Meralco).

In the same forum, Finance secretary Dominguez will ‘not touch’ most of the coal-fired power projects in pipeline as the government determines the new energy mix with the private sector moving forward.

“There has to be an energy mix policy but at the moment, we will proceed with what we have already at the pipeline so we will not stop everything. [It will] require a lot of consultation from both the entity that will provide [electricity supply] as well as people that are using it,” Dominguez said.

Other than the ideal fuel mix, AC Energy Holdings Inc.’s John Eric Francia said that the government must lay down on how it should be achieved.

“The important question is how do we get there…how do we get to that ideal mix. The policy has to spell out how we get there,” he said.

The new Department of Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said that he would review the fuel mix policy “to find the correct mix.”