NEA seeking Php29B for energization projects

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The National Electrification Administration (NEA) is seeking assistance from the Executive branch and Congress in securing a Php 29.542 billion budget to kickstart the country’s multi-tiered electrification rollout until the end of the Marcos Administration in 2028. 

In a report by the Manila Bulletin, NEA Administrator Antonio Mariano Almeda said that the country has yet to energize more than 10,000 on-grid sitios – which would need around Php 20.794 billion in financing. 

The other projects for funding include the barangay line enhancement program for Php 2.378 billion, solar photovoltaic (PV) mainstreaming program for Php 568 million, and microgrid or hybrid installation for Php 900 million. 

Data from NEA said that an additional capital infusion of Php 4.902 billion can be catalyzed through private sector players, either as new power providers and qualifying third party (QTP) investors, while others may push energization ventures as part of their corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs. 

Should the energization of all sitios and off-grid domains be realized, at least 1.168 million Filipino households will benefit from the program. 

Almenda said that he is looking into concretizing the full sitio mandate, adding that he is bent on issuing stringent for its fair and effective implementation.

However, Almenda said the project financing allocation has always been in a tight spot since 2017, as it has always been limited to an average of Php 1.6 billion annually, 

He added that the energization cost per sitio has risen to Php 2.5 million per sitio. Almenda is hopeful that they will be extended a budget of up to Php 20 billion up to 2028. 

The rise in cost has considered various factors, including raw materials, steel, development costs, and logistics, Almenda said, adding that “we have to adjust the cost, otherwise, we will not be able to  achieve the targets.”