DOE seeks comments for amendment of EPIRA

DOE-Transmission lines

The Department of Energy (DOE) is seeking comments and recommendations from concerned parties in relation to the amendments to the Republic Act. no. 9136 or the “Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001.” 

In a statement released on Friday, the DOE said that it is “requesting all interested parties to submit comments and recommendations on EPIRA Amendments.” 

Interested parties can submit their provisions to the Electric Power Industry Management Bureau on or before October 22. 

Earlier, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. expressed his intention in amending the “outdated” EPIRA in order to bring down the costs of electricity in the country. 

The DOE also pushed for amendments in the EPIRA to strengthen the role of the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) and synchronize power transmission investments. 

In a BusinessWorld report, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian said that amendments in the EPIRA should also allow the government to hold or facilitate bidding processes. 

Under the current competitive selection process regime, distribution utilities like the Manila Electric Co. (MERALCO) are the ones who seek bids. 

Gatchalian said that his proposal would ensure fair auctions, and at the same time, reduce the possibility of power outages as the government can determine the supply requirements. 

DOE is set to review the power outlook for 2023 amid the volatility in the gas market. The Department, however, said that there are enough power reserves for the next four months. 

Under the EPIRA, the country’s power industry was restructured by deregulating and privatizing most state-owned power generation and transmission assets.