Gov’t gets P1.7-B royalty payment from integrated energy firm
by Philippine Resources - September 02, 2021
Photo Credit: Bilyonaryo
The government, through the Department of Energy (DOE), has received nearly PHP1.7 billion in royalty payment from integrated energy company Semirara Mining and Power Corp. (SMPC) for the second quarter of the year.
In a statement Tuesday, SMPC said this is the highest quarterly royalty payment to the government after the firm recorded a revenue of PHP14.8 billion from April to June 2021.
SMPC’s revenue in the second quarter of 2021 was supported by all-time high coal sales and higher average selling prices.
Of the PHP1.7 billion turned over to the government, PHP1 billion will go to the national government that can be used to fund programs to fight coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
Some PHP666 million will go to local government units (LGUs) that host SMPC mine sites --PHP136 million for the province of Antique, PHP300 million for the municipality of Caluya, and PHP230 million for Barangay Semirara.
Under the Local Government Code of 1991, host LGUs of petroleum, coal, geothermal, hydrothermal, and wind facilities shall receive 40 percent of the royalty proceeds.
“The pandemic has taken a significant toll on our country. We hope that our contribution can help boost our government’s response against Covid-19,” SMPC president and chief operating officer Maria Cristina Gotianun said.
SMPC is the country’s lone power producer that mines its own fuel source --integrating its coal mining and power operations to create a local value chain.
Based on its website, SMPC generates 900 megawatts of power with an additional 1,200 MW of coal-fired power in the pipeline.
Philippine Resources - August 06, 2021
Law Establishing PH Energy Research Institute Inked
President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a law establishing the Philippine Energy Research and Policy Institute to enhance the country’s capability for energy research and policy development. Republic Act 11572, signed by Duterte on July 30, establishes the institute as an independent agency attached to the University of the Philippines (UP) with a separate budget from the premier university. Under the new law, an executive director to head the institute shall be a recognized expert in energy research and policy development with at least three years experience in the energy sector and shall have a strong organizational management background. The executive director, appointed by the UP President upon recommendation of the Executive Board, shall serve in full-time capacity for a term of five years which may be renewed. The institute’s Executive Board shall be composed of seven members comprised of the UP President as the ex-officio chairperson, and at least one representative from the fields of engineering, law, science, statistics, economics, social science, and public health, either from the academe or the private sector. Four members shall come from the academe, two members shall come from the private sector, while each representative shall come from different fields. Other members of the Executive Board shall be chosen by the UP President. Each member shall have a term of three years, which can be renewed for two more terms. The first two appointees from the academe and the first appointee from the private sector shall have a term of two years, which can be renewed for two more terms. The Executive Board may invite the secretaries of various government agencies as well as legitimate consumer and advocacy groups as resource persons during its meetings and deliberations. The institute shall support further education and training for its officers and employees to include advanced degree studies, short-term programs, online courses, and participation in conferences. Research papers, data, and other resources shall be made available to the public through its website. However, proprietary or confidential data and other resources cannot be posted or disclosed unless prior consent of the source or owner of such data and resources has been obtained by the requesting party. A Special Account in the General Fund (SAGP) for energy research, which shall be maintained and managed by the Bureau of Treasury, shall be established to support the research undertaken by the institute. The SAGF for energy research shall recognize and accept grants, contributions, and donations collected for energy research. A total of PHP200 million will be appropriated out of the General Appropriations Act (GAA) for the initial operating fund of the institute. Such amounts necessary for the sustainable operations of the institute shall be appropriated from the GAA based on the annual financial plan approved by the Executive Board and submitted to the Department of Budget and Management. Government agencies concerned are authorized to include in their respective annual budgets such necessary amounts as their contribution to the funding of certain research activities in the institute. Within 90 calendar days from the effectivity of the act, the UP, in consultation with the members of the academe, and other public and private stakeholders shall promulgate the necessary implementing rules and regulations of the act subject to the approval of the UP Board of Regents.
Marcelle P. Villegas - September 01, 2021
The 7th PH-EITI report, industry outlook transparency for oil, gas and mineral resources (Part 1)
The PH-EITI National Conference 2021 was held last July 29 with the theme "Resiliency in Transparency". PH-EITI or Philippine Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, is a government-led, multi-stakeholder initiative that implements EITI. The initiative started on 26 November 2013 under Executive Order No. 147, series of 2013. It is a government commitment first announced through EO No. 79, s. of 2012. The initiative aims to promote the open, accountable management and good governance of oil, gas and mineral resources industries. The three-hour webinar/conference featured various keynote speakers. “This is the second year that we are holding this meeting online due to the pandemic. This underscores the exceptional circumstance under which we have to operate into the foreseeable future. Nevertheless, I congratulate the EITI for its efforts to organize this national conference and produce an annual report despite all the challenges.” This was part of the Opening Remarks given by Hon. Carlos G. Dominguez, Secretary of Department of Finance.
Philippine Resources - September 07, 2021
DOE expects 7,712 MW more power supply until 2027
Photo Credit: Panay News Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Alfonso Cusi said the country may expect additional 7,712 megawatts of power supply from 2021 to 2027. During President Rodrigo Duterte’s Talk to the People late Thursday night, Cusi said the construction of new power sources is underway this year and in the coming years to augment the needed power requirements as the Philippine economy continues to expand. He said between 2016 and 2020, installed capacity grew from 21,424 MW to 26,287, increasing by 4,863 MW. Cusi added that the energy stakeholders have been preparing for the anticipated depletion of the Malampaya natural gas field through building new liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities and exploration of indigenous power sources. By next year, two LNG projects are expected to go online—the LNG project of AG&P and Osaka Gas by the second quarter and the LNG facility of First Gen and Tokyo Gas by third quarter, Cusi said. “Aside from LNG, we continue to pursue the exploration of our indigenous resources like gas and oil in the West Philippine Sea,” the energy chief said in Filipino. He added five service contracts were awarded since the government lifted the ban on exploration activities in the West Philippine Sea last year. “The agency has recommended the awarding of four more service contracts for exploration in the West Philippine Sea,” Cusi added. He said the DOE continues to partner with the international community to study potential power sources in the future. The DOE has partnered with Australian and Japanese firms to study hydrogen as the fuel of the future. Cusi said the Nuclear Energy Program Inter-Agency Committee is also looking into the potential of nuclear energy to be part of the country’s energy mix. He said the DOE assures there is a sufficient supply of power across the country, additional power capacity to be installed in the coming years amid the growing demand, and lowering power rates. Article Courtesy of the Philippine News Agency
Philippine Resources - September 24, 2021
DOTr, Pasay City sign deal for monorail, flyover extension
Residents and those working in Pasay City will soon enjoy easier public transportation after the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the city government signed a deal for the construction of a monorail and extension of the Epifanio Delos Santos Avenue (Edsa)-Tramo flyover. In a live broadcast on Facebook on Wednesday, DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade and Pasay City Mayor Emi Calixto-Rubiano signed the memorandum of agreement (MOA) for the proposed Integrated Pasay Monorail and Edsa-Tramo flyover extension project. Tugade said the project will be interoperable with the Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1), Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3), the Edsa Busway, and the Edsa Greenways. “[Ito ay] makapagbibigay ng mas mabilis at episyenteng biyahe sa mga pasahero. Magiging mas madali na rin ang access patungong central business district (CBD) ng Pasay (This will provide fast and efficient travel to passengers. Access to Pasay CBD will also be easier),” Tugade said. Aside from its benefits to commuters, he said the project will also create jobs. “Ang paulit-ulit kong sinasabi na karugtong ng mga proyekto para sa kaunlaran ay trabaho para sa Pilipino (What I have always been saying is that development projects go hand-in-hand with jobs for Filipinos),” Tugade said. He said the project is a partnership between the DOTr, Pasay City government, and SM Prime Holdings. “Makakaasa 'ho kayong magpapatuloy ang DOTr sa pagsusulong ng mga proyekto para sa ikauunlad ng pampublikong transportasyon sa bansa (You can be rest assured that the DOTr will continue to promote projects for the development of public transportation in the country),” Tugade said. The MOA signing was witnessed by Pasay City Vice Mayor Noel del Rosario, DOTr Undersecretary for Finance Giovanni Lopez, Undersecretary for Legal Affairs Reinier Paul Yebra, Undersecretary for Railways Timothy John Batan, SM Prime Holdings President Jeffrey Lim, and other representatives from the Pasay City government and the private sector. On Sept. 7, the Pasay City government and the SM Prime Holdings made a joint presentation on the project to the DOTr. By Raymond Carl Dela Cruz Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency
Philippine Resources - September 24, 2021
DOTr eyes GenSan airport as alternate int'l gateway
Photo credit: Department of Transportation The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is pushing for the inclusion of the newly rehabilitated and expanded airport here as among the alternate gateways for returning Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and international travelers. DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade proposed the move on Thursday as he personally led the formal unveiling and inauguration of the city airport’s new passenger terminal building and other completed facilities. He said the city’s international standard airport can accommodate airline passengers coming in from as far as the Middle East. Tugade said it can be realized once the proposed increase in the daily cap for returning OFWs, currently at 2,000 for the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), is approved. Once the cap is expanded, he said NAIA might “choke” with the influx of airline passengers from various countries. “If we will increase the cap, we need to expand our gateways and not limit them to Clark, Cebu, and NAIA. We can include GenSan among the gateways for travelers from Doha who are going to Manila,” he said in a press conference. He said they will propose such strategy with the airlines serving the international routes, including the Philippine Airlines, and seek the approval of the city government. The other possible alternate gateways could be the Laoag International Airport in Ilocos Norte and the Bohol-Panglao International Airport, Tugade said. The rehabilitated and expanded General Santos Airport passenger terminal building, which was completed early this month, is part of the PHP959-million upgrade implemented by the national government. The other completed components are the procurement and installation of navigational aids and the construction of the new Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) administration building at the airport. Under the project, Tugade said the passenger terminal area has tripled in size from 4,000 to 12,000 square meters. “This will allow the airport to accommodate more passengers and provide them comfortable and convenient travel,” he said in his speech. A DOTr report said the larger passenger terminal building can now accommodate around 2 million passengers annually, a significant jump from the previous 800,000 per year. Tugade said the improvement at the city airport will continue next year with the upgrading of its air control tower, which he considered as “too low.” He said they will build a “higher and modernized” tower in 2022 to make it “more world-class” and can easily adjust to the needs of the airport. The official said the upgrading of the airport, which started in 2018, is among the agency and the national government’s top priorities in Mindanao. He said the initiative is part of the government’s efforts to bring more progress and economic opportunities in Mindanao, which “suffered from long years of neglect in terms of development.” Tugade said they endeavored to implement these projects despite the challenges posed by the continuing coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic to pursue their goal of giving a “comfortable and convenient life” to Filipinos. “After the pandemic, we want all these developments in place and ready to benefit the people,” he said. In a video message, President Rodrigo Duterte commended the DOTr, the local government, and concerned stakeholders for completing the projects at the city airport amid the Covid-19 pandemic. He said the city has “gone a long way” in terms of the development of its air connectivity and airport facilities. “The rehabilitation and expansion of the airport passenger terminal building, among others, will truly boost General Santos City’s role as an agro-industrial and eco-tourism hub,” the President said. City Mayor Ronnel Rivera lauded the national government for helping the city realize its dream of having an international-standard airport. Aside from the expanded passenger terminal building, the airport is now capable of accommodating bigger aircraft like Boeing 737 and 747, as well as Airbus A330, A340, and A350. “(What) we are seeing now is a result of multisectoral commitment and dedication in various stages of the airport development, which includes coordination of several initiatives, preparation of the airport master plan, operations, and marketing,” he said. The mayor said the local government will continue to engage with prospective investors and airlines for the opening of more flights to and from the airport and the development of adjacent areas. He cited the proposed establishment of an aerotropolis or growth area centered on the city airport and its surrounding areas. “We are opening a wide array of opportunities, not only on the improvement of our infrastructure facilities but also in terms of investments that will generate more economic opportunities for the city and the entire region (Soccsksargen),” he said. Aside from the inauguration of the airport projects, Tugade also led the unveiling of completed initiatives at the Makar port here. The DOTr said it includes the construction of the Port Operations Building and other vital facilities, which includes a parking area, covered court, port manager’s quarter or Day Care Center, and drainage system. “The improved port of Makar will now offer safer, comfortable, and a more convenient port experience to passengers, while ensuring a faster turnaround for vessels, cargo trucks, and other ancillary service providers,” it said. Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency
Philippine Resources - September 22, 2021
Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway 83% Complete
Photo credit: Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway As of August 31, 2021, the construction progress of the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway (CCLEX) project was at 83.84 percent. The P30-billion toll bridge, which will be substantially completed by the end of 2021, will use a full electronic toll system when it opens to motorists in the first quarter of 2022 to enable faster traffic flow and seamless travel. The project recently marked a milestone with the completion of the installation of all 56 stay cables that hold the main bridge deck. On September 11, the Cebu Cordova Link Expressway Corporation (CCLEC), through its contractor, installed the last and longest stay cable, which is 219 meters long. The gap on the main bridge, on the other hand, is now down to only two meters before span closure and preparations are underway for the lowering of the form travelers. These form travelers, which weigh 500 tons in each tower, were used to construct the main bridge’s pier table and deck. Also, all 434 NU (Nebraska University) girders for the entire project have already been installed. With this, the mobile launching gantry used to install the girders have been demobilized. At the Cebu South Coastal Road (CSCR) on ramp and off ramp sections of CCLEX, construction of its substructures is complete. Ongoing works are now on the installation of precast planks and the concreting of deck slab. Also finished is the 200-meter pedestrian footbridge beside the CSCR with all six prefabricated steel walkways already installed. The footbridge will start near the U-turn slot of the South Road Properties’ welcome tower and will connect to the on-ramp sidewalk of CCLEX. At the Cebu viaduct, the construction of deck slab is ongoing. The Cordova viaduct, on the other hand, is now structurally complete with its substructure already done. Installation of handrails are underway. At the causeway, embankment works continue to progress with the placing of 20 vent pipes, which equalize the flow of seawater along the Cordova Channel, is finished. Also structurally complete are the four low-level bridges along the causeway, which will provide fishermen continued access to their fishing grounds. Aside from these, works are ongoing for the toll plaza and the CCLEX Operations and Maintenance Center. CCLEX, highlighted by its iconic crosses on top of the twin pylons of the cable-stayed main bridge over the Mactan Channel, is Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation’s (MPTC) first toll road project outside Luzon. CCLEX, which will be the third link to Mactan Island from Cordova Municipality to mainland Cebu through Cebu City’s South Road Properties, has a design speed of 80 kilometers per hour (kph) and a navigational clearance or height of 51 meters to allow large vessels to pass underneath the bridge. Not only is CCLEX seen to reduce traffic and make traveling more convenient but also spur trade activities and open greater economic opportunities for Cebu and the rest of the Visayas region. CCLEX is a project of Cebu Cordova Link Expressway Corporation (CCLEC), in partnership with the local government units of Cebu City and Municipality of Cordova. CCLEC is a wholly owned subsidiary of MPTC, the toll road arm of Metro Pacific Investments Corporation (MPIC), a publicly listed infrastructure holding company and a member of the MVP Group of Companies. MPTC is the largest toll road concessionaire and operator in the Philippines, which expansion goals include establishing toll operations in the Visayas, other parts of the Philippines, and in neighboring countries notably Vietnam, and Indonesia. Article courtesy of Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway