News

Industry

Philippine Resources - July 31, 2022

SMC to open $500-M electric car battery plant in Dinagat

San Miguel Corp. (SMC), one of the country’s largest and most diversified conglomerates, is set to open a USD500 million electric car battery plant in Dinagat Islands province, Governor Nilo Demerey Jr. said Thursday. Demerey confirmed the company’s decision to establish the plant in Dinagat Islands after his meeting with SMC president and chief executive officer Ramon S. Ang on Wednesday. “The establishment of the electric car battery plant will commence in September this year,” Demerey said in an interview. The plant will be constructed within the company’s 25,000 mining claim in the province, he added. “This is part of our efforts to industrialize Dinagat Islands and create more job opportunities, increase the income of the province, and uplift the lives of our people,” Demerey said. He said the construction and full operation of the electric car battery plant would generate about 10,000 jobs. “The components for the manufacture of electric car batteries are already present on the island,” Demerey said. The SMC has mining interests in the towns of Cagdianao, San Jose, and Basilisa. Its mining claims are reportedly rich in minerals, such as nickel, manganese, chromite, and iron that are needed for the manufacture of the batteries. “We are now working on the necessary documents and pertinent papers for the start of the construction of the plant in September,” Demerey said. He thanked President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. for supporting the initiatives of the local officials of the Dinagat Islands for industrialization. “President Marcos is instrumental in this endeavor, especially in the setting up of this battery plant in the Dinagat Islands,” Demerey said. Other matters between the provincial government and the SMC about the construction of the plant, such as tax holidays, are still being finalized, the governor said.   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Industry

Philippine Resources - July 31, 2022

PH, SoKor discuss nuclear cooperation

Philippine Ambassador to South Korea Ma. Theresa Dizon-De Vega met with Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power Co. Ltd (KHNP) executives last July 19 to discuss future Philippines-Republic of Korea (ROK) cooperation on nuclear technology and renewable energy. The KHNP executives include Project and Overseas Nuclear Business Division Executive Vice President Nam Yoh-Shik, Overseas Nuclear Business Section Vice President Kim Yongsoo and Overseas Nuclear Business Section Senior Manager Choi Younghwan. During the call, De Vega affirmed the Philippines’ interest in focusing on a viable and sustainable energy plan and informed ROK that President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. himself expressed interest in pursuing nuclear technology and other energy cooperation platforms with South Korea. KHNP is the largest power generator in Korea, producing one-third or around 28 percent of Korea’s domestic demand for power through a combination of nuclear power, hydropower, pumped-storage power, and new and renewable energy. It is also an energy partner of 29 countries for the global power supply. KHNP is a long-time partner of the Philippines on energy-related activities, having led the feasibility studies for the safe use of the Bataan nuclear power plant and the Cagayan Eco Zone. The KNHP likewise shared they are trying to support more experts in the nuclear energy sector and was pleased to share that Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) International School has a student engineer from the Philippines. The officials looked forward to further strengthening PH-ROK energy cooperation in the future.   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Industry

Philippine Resources - July 31, 2022

Malampaya acquisition deal signed

Photo credit: A subsidiary of Enrique Razon Jr.-led company has signed a share purchase agreement to formalize the acquisition of stakes in Malampaya gas field from Dennis Uy’s firm. In a statement Friday, Prime Infrastructure Capital, Inc. bared that its unit, Prime Exploration Pte. Ltd., sealed the share purchase deal with MEXP Holding Pte. Ltd., a subsidiary of Udenna Corp. Prime Infra added the transaction is still subject to the consent of the Philippine National Oil Company Exploration Corp. (PNOC EC) and the Department of Energy (DOE). To recall, MEXP acquired 45-percent share of Shell Philippines Exploration B.V. (SPEX) in Malampaya deep-water gas-to-power project. SPEX is also the operator of the natural gas field. MEXP’s buyout of SPEX’s share in Malampaya was a subject of Senate inquiries in 2021. Senator Sherwin Gatchalian then urged the DOE to carefully assess the financial health of Udenna’s subsidiary. Prime Infra said its acquisition of shares in Malampaya will inject investments to expand Malampaya operations, adding it supports the administration’s goal of energy security. “We believe that gas is an important transition fuel in the near-term, reducing the need for baseload fossil fuels like coal. Hence, we intend to accelerate investments on the Malampaya gas field to improve the output of existing wells and, if possible, develop new wells in the area once the license extension is secured from the government,” Prime Infra chairperson Enrique Razon Jr. said. Razon added that Prime Infra, Shell, and Udenna are working closely to ensure the smooth transition of Malampaya operations from SPEX to Prime Exploration. By Kris Crismundo   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Place your Ad Here!

Industry

Philippine Resources - July 28, 2022

Time for PH to tap nuclear power source

Photo credit: IHS Markit Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri said Tuesday he will fully support the plan of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to explore the country’s potentials on nuclear energy as a cheap and reliable source. Marcos said in his first State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday that if the country wants to attract investors, both local and foreign, energy-level production must be increased. "Why not? We are one of the few countries that have not looked at the nuclear option in Southeast Asia. The countries that are developing nuclear power in Asia -- Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, even Singapore, are looking at the nuclear option, smaller nuclear power plants, and even Myanmar. We're already left behind," Zubiri said in an interview with a news channel. Despite being a renewable energy advocate, as evidenced by the Renewable Energy Act which he authored, Zubiri admitted that there are not enough efforts to produce the energy requirement the country needs over the next six years. "If you want to have an 8-percent GDP (Gross Domestic Product) growth rate, we better have an energy sector that is robust, that can deliver the power the different industries need to be able to power other programs and projects," he said. A nuclear power plant, Zubiri said, might take six years to develop starting from its infancy, but can deliver thousands of megawatts from a single plant. He said the facility must be built right, strong enough to withstand calamities, and away from earthquake faults. Senate President Pro Tempore Loren Legarda, a known environmentalist, said she is open to exploring the possibility of nuclear energy but it must be considered "clean energy". "I may not be an expert in nuclear energy. I am open to hearing discussions and consultations with various stakeholders and experts in science on nuclear energy. I have read that nuclear energy is said to be clean. However, what about the nuclear waste? I am interested to know how it will be handled. At the same time, the safety measures," she said. Senator Francis Tolentino is likewise in favor of nuclear energy, which he learned has zero emission. "President Marcos’ notion is that nuclear energy will provide greater means of support in uplifting the lives of our countrymen," he said. Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, meanwhile, asked the Department of Energy (DOE) to brief legislators on whether nuclear energy must be injected in the country’s energy mix, especially in light of climate change. “We should request the Department of Energy to brief us, because that is a large sum of money to study the possibility, the risk, and the opportunities, the benefits to consumers and we have not seen the report of that study. To support the scientific-based approach, that study should be scientific and should be in the hands of the legislators because that would be a guiding document for us,” Gatchalian said, referring to the million-peso budget spent for studies. In his SONA, Marcos said he believes it is time to reexamine the country's strategy toward building nuclear power plants. He said it should be compliant with the regulations of the International Atomic Agency Regulations for Nuclear Power Plants which has been strengthened after the Fukushima Daiichi incident in Japan in 2011. Following a major earthquake, a 15-meter tsunami disabled the power supply and cooling of three reactors. According to the World Nuclear Association, there have been no deaths or cases of radiation sickness from the nuclear accident but over 100,000 people were evacuated as a preventative measure. Official figures showed 2,313 disaster-related deaths among evacuees, in addition to the about 19,500 that were killed by the earthquake or tsunami.    Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Industry

Philippine Resources - July 28, 2022

France keen to help PH develop nuclear energy

Photo credit: Embassy of France to the Philippines and Micronesia - French Ambassador Michèle Boccoz The French government is keen to help the Philippines develop its nuclear power program as the Marcos administration looks for other reliable sources of energy. French Ambassador Michèle Boccoz said the embassy has met with some of the Cabinet members and nuclear power was listed among the key areas Paris and Manila could cooperate on. "(T)here's obviously an interest. As I said, we have an experience and expertise in many different sectors of renewable energy, including the nuclear sector," Boccoz said at a reception in Makati City on Tuesday. She said working on small modular reactors is "probably much more realistic" than reviving the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant. "I think that this is a thing of the past because the technologies have evolved so much that it wouldn't really make sense to work to build this kind of project and it's probably too big and it probably needs too much of the grid to be operational," she added. "So having a sort of more modular systems is probably much more realistic and also in terms of the terrain here and the systemic risks and others. These are much smaller units that can be much more easily protected." Boccoz, meanwhile, clarified that talks are still in the "very early stages" as Manila has to put in place a framework first. In his first State of the Nation Address on July 25, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. sought to re-examine the country's strategy towards building nuclear power plants in the Philippines. "We will comply of course with the International Atomic Energy Agency regulations for nuclear power plants as they have been strengthened after Fukushima. In the area of nuclear power, there have been new technologies developed that allow smaller-scale modular nuclear plants and other derivations thereof," he said. "Once again, PPPs (public-private partnerships) will play a part in support as funding in this period is limited." France generates about 70 percent of its electricity from nuclear power plants but plans to reduce this to 50 percent by 2035 as its shifts to more renewables, such as solar and wind. Besides nuclear, Boccoz said, France is also beginning to have discussions on hydrogen and other renewable energy sources with the new administration. By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Industry

Philippine Resources - July 28, 2022

China ready to restart oil exploration talks with PH 'anytime'

Photo credit: Embassy of the People's Republic of China in the Republic of the Philippines - Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian China is ready to restart talks on oil and gas exploration with the Philippines as soon as the latter gives the go signal, Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian said Wednesday. "In the field of energy, we hope that we will continue to work on oil and gas cooperation. (W)e hope we start that negotiation and find some solution for the benefits of our two peoples to meet the need or the demand of energy of this country and China," he told reporters in Pasay City. "I think with the new administration in place, we are ready to restart our negotiation anytime." At the same time, Huang said Beijing is open to working with Manila as it shifts to renewables. The two countries signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on joint oil and gas development in the West Philippines Sea in November 2018. After three years of negotiations, the Philippines terminated the talks, citing possible issues with the Constitution just before former president Rodrigo Duterte stepped down from office. In addition, the envoy said the two nations must also "work harder" on developing clean energy as a means of addressing the climate crisis. "Last year, the export of electric vehicles of China accounts for more than half of the world's. We are one of the leading players in terms of clean energy and so we are ready to work with this country to share our technology, share our expertise to move forward hand-in-hand," he said. By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Place your Ad Here!

Construction

Philippine Resources - July 28, 2022

DPWH eyes improved mobility in NCR with more bridges, expressways

Photo credit: Rappler - Binondo-Intramuros Bridge, Manila The government will build several bridges in Metro Manila to further improve mobility, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) said Tuesday. Secretary Manuel Bonoan said construction and development in the National Capital Region (NCR) will include “I think, five or six bridges, across the Pasig River.” “As far as the infrastructure program is concerned, we will continue with the construction of more bridges across Pasig River and Marikina River so that the mobility will be enhanced from north to south sectors because there are just but a few bridges connecting north and south sector,” he said at the post-SONA (State of the Nation Address) Economic Briefing held at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City. Apart from bridges, the government is also looking at constructing more expressways “that would be leading toward the other areas of Metro Manila.” “Right now, I think there are several expressway projects that are in line. There’s an expressway that is going to be developed in the eastern corridor of Metro Manila that will go through, Pasig, Cainta, and all the way to Bulacan,” Bonoan said. He said the extension of the South Luzon Expressway going to Lucena City and the Cavite-Laguna Expressway to Tagaytay City are underway. Bonoan said President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. announced in his inaugural State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday that the “Build, Build, Build” (BBB) programs initiated by the Duterte administration will continue. “I reiterate today (Tuesday) the marching order of the President during his SONA that under his administration, the infrastructure development program will be pursued relentlessly. We will continue what has been started under the BBB program of the past administration and must not only continued but whenever possible, be expanded,” he said. “As the President said, the infrastructure program will be very vital to support national government efforts to push for the revival of the economy which has slumped due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This is the foundation that we will build upon as the President pronounced we must keep the momentum and aspire to build better more and faster,” he added.   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Construction

Philippine Resources - July 28, 2022

Metro Manila Subway Project 60% complete on procurement

An official of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) on Tuesday said the Metro Manila Subway Project has reached 60 percent completion rate on procurement. “Metro Manila Subway is 33 kilometers (km) from Valenzuela all the way to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), around 17 stations. We expect to provide daily ridership from 400,000 to as high as 800,000,” DOTr Undersecretary for Railways Cesar Chavez said during the post-State of the Nation Address (SONA) economic briefing at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City. He also gave an update on the railway projects based on four indicators—procurement, design, right-of-way (ROW) acquisition, and construction. Another big-ticket project is the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) project, with both its Tutuban to Malolos and Malolos to Clark segments at 93 percent complete on procurement, while the Manila to Tutuban to Calamba segment is at 61 percent complete on procurement. “As to the detail and design, we're more than 70 percent complete, and as to ROW, it's 55 to 60 percent,” he said. The NSCR is expected to be operational by 2026 to 2027 and will run for 147 kilometers from Clark to Calamba. It will have 35 stations and is expected to have a daily passenger capacity of 400,000 to 700,000 daily. Chavez said the Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1) Extension Project—which will extend the LRT-1 southward from Baclaran to Bacoor, Cavite—is at 69 percent completion rate on construction. “The 122 trains are there already, around 24 rolling stocks. The station developments are in place already, except Las Piñas to Bacoor,” he said. Meanwhile, the Metro Rail Transit Line 7 (MRT-7), a public-private partnership (PPP) project with San Miguel Corp., is at a 61 percent completion rate on construction. Once complete, Chavez said the MRT-7 is seen to have a daily passenger capacity from 400,000 to 800,000. It will run for 22.8 km from northeast to northwest, have 14 stations, and will connect San Jose del Monte, Bulacan to the Common Station in Quezon City. To date, Chavez said the common station, or the Unified Grand Central Station, is expected to be completed by “the second quarter of 2023.” Designed to connect the LRT-1, MRT-3, MRT-7, and the Metro Manila Subway with access to road transport, he said the station is expected to serve “at least 150, passengers daily.” In addition to these projects in Luzon, he reiterated President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.’s desire to complete the Cebu Railway System, the Panay Railway Project, and the Mindanao Railway Project (MRP). The MRP, he said, is to be “resubmitted” to the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) “in the coming weeks” for funding reapproval. “The intention is to continue whether we're going to PPP or ODA (official development assistance), we will leave it to the Department of Finance, NEDA, and the economic team of the President,” he said. He said while the Panay Railway Project is not “in the master plan,” he said at least five railway projects have been identified for development in the Visayas. “Good news for Cebu, because in the master plan of rail transport from 2018 to 2019 there are five railway projects identified for development in the Visayas, in particular in Cebu province,” he said. On Monday, Marcos in his first SONA announced his administration’s desire to continue the “Build, Build, Build” program of the previous administration and other projects such as the Panay Railway Project and the Cebu Railway System. The 12 railway projects have a combined cost of PHP1.9 trillion and are at various stages of implementation. Marcos noted that the infrastructure development spending of the country will be sustained at 5 percent of the gross domestic product in addition to making use of PPPs.   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Construction

Philippine Resources - July 28, 2022

Gov't to review funding options for several major infra projects

Photo: The government will review other funding options for several major railway projects that were proposed to be financed by China. Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno said the Japanese government, the World Bank, and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank are among the options to finance the projects. (PNA file photo) The government will review funding proposals and options for several infrastructure projects previously eyed to be financed by China. “We will revisit. At saka (and we will) we will resubmit it to NEDA (National Economic and Development Authority) just in case,” Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno told journalists after the post-State of the Nation Address (SONA) Philippine economic briefing in Pasay City on Tuesday. Transportation Undersecretary Cesar Chavez earlier said the official development assistance loan deals for three major infrastructure projects have been considered “withdrawn” after the Chinese government failed to act on the previous administration’s funding request. The financial deals are for the engineering, procurement, construction, and commissioning for the Subic-Clark Railway project, the design-build pact for the Philippine National Railways (PNR) South Long-Haul Project, and the management consultancy for the Mindanao Railway Project (MRP).  The Department of Finance (DOF) earlier informed the China Eximbank that the loan applications would be valid only until May 31, 2022, or a month before the end of the Duterte administration’s official term.  Diokno said the government has other funding options for the said infrastructure projects, such as those from the Japanese government, World Bank (WB) and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).  “These are nice projects. These have been evaluated by NEDA and (these are) socially-worthwhile projects so we will just look for funding,” he said. Meanwhile, Diokno said the government will push for the implementation of other railway projects to boost the domestic economy’s recovery and growth potential.   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Mining

Philippine Resources - July 28, 2022

Atlas Mining Attained Php2 Billion Net Income in 1H 2022

Atlas Consolidated Mining and Development Corporation (“Atlas Mining”) completed the first half of the year 2022 with a reported net income of Php2 billion compared to the net income of Php1.935 billion for the same period in 2021. The improvement in the bottom line is attributed to the considerable increase in grades and metal prices during the first half of the year. Atlas Mining’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Carmen Copper Corporation, reported copper metal production from 38.73 million pounds in 2021 to 36.58 million pounds in 2022 which attributed to lower tonnage milled. In the first half of 2022, milling tonnage decreased by 6% from 9.26 million tonnes to 8.66 million tonnes. On the other hand, copper grade increased by 1% from 0.231% to 0.234% and gold grade improved by 6% from 5.09 grams/dmt to 5.41 grams/dmt. Copper metal content of concentrate shipped decreased by 2% to 38.80 million pounds but gold content increased by 6% to 11,212 ounces due to higher gold grade. The increase in metal prices continued in the first half of this year where copper price increased by 6% from $4.21/lb to $4.45/lb and gold price increased by 4% from USD1,812/ounce to USD1,879/ounce compared to the same period last year. Number of shipments were comparatively the same as first half of last year but the higher prices in the first half of this year pushed revenues to grow by 8% to Php9.74 billion from Ph9.01 billion. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) settled at Php3.89 billion in the second quarter of 2022 compared to Php4.93 billion in the same period of 2021. The reduction was caused by the increase in energy cost particularly power and fuel. This likewise pulled down core income for the period to Php930 million in the first half of 2022 from Php2.16 billion in same period of 2021. Accordingly, cash generated from operations improved which enabled the additional loan payment of $60 million of Atlas Mining’s loans on the first half of 2022. With the partial repayment of loan, an accounting gain of Php938 million was recognized in the second quarter.   Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange

Mining

Philippine Resources - July 28, 2022

Ilocos Norte to recognize best practices in mining

Photo credit: Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte logo Ilocos Norte is set to recognize the public and the private sector’s initiatives and exemplary achievements in promoting responsible mining. Provincial administrator Yvette Convento-Leynes confirmed this on Monday as she reported that the awarding of outstanding partners is set on July 27 in time for a provincial mining summit at the JLP Resort in Barangay Suba, Paoay, Ilocos Norte. “One of the highlights of the summit is to recognize and give special wards to our outstanding quarry permittees who adhere to our rules and regulations as well as those who help us in apprehending violators,” she said, stressing the importance of the quarry industry as a major source of local revenue in the province. “This is the only way to thank them for the contributions they are giving to the province,” she said. The provincial government, however, has yet to announce the awardees. To date, the Provincial Quarry Office reported that there are about 60 permit holders of commercial sand and gravel and 22 permittees of industrial sand and gravel. Hosted by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Environment and Management Bureau and in cooperation with the Ilocos Norte government, the mining summit aims to discuss pressing issues and concerns for the minerals industry in the region. Existing quarry permittees, including new permit applicants, are expected to attend to help them become updated of the best practices and new mining policies. Earlier, the Commission on Audit commended the Provincial Quarry Office under the provincial government for increasing its quarry collections to PHP43.8 million in 2021 as compared to the PHP26.8 million in the previous year. By Leilanie Adriano   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Mining

Marcelle P. Villegas - July 24, 2022

MPSA granted to Semirara, door opens for more projects after issuance of E.O. No. 130

Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) announced on 10 March 2022 that the DENR has granted MPSA 352-2022-VI to DMCI Holdings, Inc., a subsidiary of Semirara Mining and Power Corp. (SMPC). The MPSA is for SMPC’s Hamalian Limestone Project which is located at Semirara Island in Caluya, Antique. The project covers an area of 3,807.0571-hectares. This MPSA now gives SMPC the exclusive rights to begin mining operations within the contract for a period of 25 years. This is renewable for the like period.

Construction

Philippine Resources - July 24, 2022

CLLEX SUPPORTING AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTIVITY NOW 96% COMPLETED

The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) is inching closer to delivering the entire 30-kilometer Central Luzon Link Expressway (CLLEX) Project which is 96 percent overall complete to date. In his report to Secretary Manuel M. Bonoan, DPWH Undersecretary for Unified Project Management Office (UPMO) Operations Emil K. Sadain said that the first 18 kilometers of CLLEX from Tarlac Interchange at the connection of Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX) and Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX) in Balingcanaway, Tarlac City to Guimba-Aliaga Road in Aliaga, Nueva Ecija will be extended with additional 11 kilometers by March 2023 to include seven (7) kilometers up to San Juan Interchange and four (4) kilometers to Umangan-Julo Road at the boundary of Aliaga and Cabanatuan City before Felipe Vergara Road and Daang Maharlika Highway. Undersecretary Sadain with DPWH UPMO-Roads Management Cluster 1 Project Director Benjamin A. Bautista inspected on Friday, July 22, 2022 the continuing works for the construction of four (4) lane expressway including interchanges, overpasses and underpasses from Aliaga Section to Cabanatuan Section whose progress were stalled in the past due to unworkable portions with problem in the acquisition of road right of way. CLLEX is part of the Luzon Spine Expressway Network which is aimed at reducing travel time from the northernmost part of Luzon, Ilocos, to the southernmost part, Bicol. Other than cutting travel time between Tarlac and Nueva Ecija, the partial opening in 2021 of CLLEX provided options to motorists and spread out traffic better resulting to reduce transportion costs, benefitting farmers of Central Luzon and Cagayan Valley Regions. “The CLLEX Project will support the country’s new vision for improving agricultural productivity under the administration of President Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos Jr. Using this toll-free high standard highway, palay crops and other products from Nueva Ecija - the Philippines’ rice granary, including those coming from Region 2 can reach the market centers in Metro Manila much faster and cheaper”, added Undersecretary Sadain. Essentially an extension of the SCTEX and TPLEX, CLLEX will form an important east-west link for the expressway network of Luzon to ensure a continuous seamless traffic flow for the motoring public from Metro Manila and vice versa passing thru North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), SCTEX, and TPLEX. Once fully operational, the ₱11.811-Billion expressway is expected to shorten the usual travel time of 70 minutes between Tarlac City and Cabanatuan City to just 20 minutes. With funding assistance from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the expressway will also facilitate better access to economic hub and areas of employment in Region 3 such as Clark and Subic.   Article courtesy of The Department of Public Works and Highways

Mining

Marcelle P. Villegas - July 23, 2022

Senator Praises South Cotabato Governor for Vetoing Ban on Open-Pit Mining

Last June 3, 2022, Gov. Tamayo announced in a public statement his decision to veto Ordinance No. 23, Series of 2022 that was passed by the Sanggunian Panlalawigan (SP) (or Provincial Board) of South Cotabato last May 16, 2022. The ordinance modified the Provincial Environmental Code of South Cotabato and lifted the ban on open-pit mining in the province. [1] In response to this, Senator Leila M. De Lima praises Governor Tamayo Jr. for his rejection of the ordinance.

Place your Ad Here!

Industry

Philippine Resources - July 22, 2022

Resumption of PH-China talks for joint energy exploration urged

Photo credit:  Senator Robinhood Padilla filed a resolution, urging President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to resume bilateral talks for cooperation on oil-gas development in the West Philippine Sea. Padilla said on Thursday Senate Resolution 9 aims to address the problems caused by the rising prices of oil due to international circumstances like the Russia-Ukraine conflict. "Now therefore, be it resolved, as it is hereby resolved, urging President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. to resume the bilateral talks with the People's Republic of China for the purposes of cooperation on oil and gas development in the West Philippine Sea," SR 9 read, citing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Cooperation on Oil and Gas Development between the Philippines and China on Nov. 20, 2018. The Philippines, SR 9 added, requires a long-term strategy to resolve its oil dependency on foreign sources as the country is vulnerable to the negative effect of the increased oil prices. "The parties further understand that the MOU shall not be prejudicial to 'respective legal positions' which 'does not create rights or obligations under international or domestic law' and as such, there is no derogation of the Philippines' assertion of its sovereign rights in the West Philippine Sea," the resolution said. Padilla said in the resolution that the execution of the MOU is a "valid exercise of the executive powers of the President" under Sec. 1, Art. VII of the Constitution. Meanwhile, he said Sec. 2 Art. XII of the Constitution allows the Philippines to "directly undertake to or enter into co-production, joint venture or production-sharing agreements on petroleum and other mineral oils and all forces of potential energy." "The new administration has the opportunity to resume the bilateral talks with the People's Republic of China (PRC) for purposes of cooperation in the WPS on gas and oil development without bargaining the sovereign rights of the Philippines on the disputed territories therein," Padilla said. "In view of the gains obtained from the MOU where the GRP [Government of the Republic of the Philippines] and PRC cooperated on the terms provided therein on the gas and oil development in the WPS, the new administration can further explore these common interests of cooperation to resolve the country's oil dependency from foreign countries," he added. Like Senators Grace Poe and Aquilino Pimentel III, Padilla also is amenable to the suspension of excise taxes on unleaded premium gas, regular gas, and diesel oil, to address the effects of rising oil prices. Through Senate Bill 229, Padilla seeks to amend Section 148 of the National Internal Revenue Code, in which the excise tax for oil products will be automatically suspended if the average Dubai crude oil price based on the Mean of Platts Singapore will reach or exceed USD80 per barrel in three months. By Wilnard Bacelonia   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Join the Philippines'

Mining and Construction Community

Be the "First" to get our exclusive Digital Magazine & Newsletter.