The Philippine Electricity Market Corporation (PEMC) defended the Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines (IEMOP) and the Department of Energy (DOE) in the wake of Sen. Manny Pacquiao’s corruption allegations in the country’s power sector.
Before leaving on Saturday to train for his upcoming fight in Las Vegas, Pacquiao accused the DOE of authorizing IEMOP, which operates the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM), to commence operations with only Php7,000 in paid-up capital and that the latter gets billions of pesos in the process.
The senator-cum-boxing champion further claimed that the contract awarded to the spot market operator did not go through a bidding process.
“[It] is regrettable that [Pacquiao] inaccurately brought up these recent charges against the WESM and the creation of the IEMOP,” PEMC said in a statement. PEMC is WESM’s governing body.
“There is nothing questionable about the creation of the IEMOP. Its existence is consistent with the provisions in Section 30 of the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA) of 2001 and is a product of a series of consultations with the electric power industry stakeholders,” PEMC added.
PEMC lamented Pacquiao’s pronouncement given efforts to improve the spot market, particularly the Enhanced WESM Design and Operations (EWDO). IEMOP began implementing the EWDO on June 26, effectively switching the spot market’s trading interval from the previous one hour to the current five minutes.
PEMC also developed two in-house systems to monitor WESM, namely the Compliance Post-Evaluation Monitoring System (CPEMS) and the New Market Assessment System (NMAS).
The CPEMS offers a platform for the spot market’s compliance officers to explain potential breaches by providing supporting documents. It also allows WESM participants to receive reports regarding the PEMC’s findings. Meanwhile, the NMAS collects data and monitors the market for the PEMC’s Market Assessment Group.
“These governance systems, largely developed in-house by the PEMC personnel who have had years of experience in monitoring the market, have undergone and passed third-party audits,” PEMC said.
PEMC used to operate the WESM until 2018, when it transferred the responsibility to IEMOP.
Photo from IEMOP website.