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PIA Press Release

Palace to respect ERC decision on power rates

Manila (10 November) -- Malacañang said it would respect the decision of the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) on the petition of the Manila Electric Company (Meralco) to increase its power rates as long as the decision undergoes the proper process.

Press Secretary Jesus Dureza said in a radio interview that the government is giving the ERC leeway on the matter because under the law the latter has the sole discretion to decide on the petitioner's petition.

"Ang ERC ay binigyan ng poder ng ating gobyerno at ng ating batas na siyang magde-determine ng increases at kung may reduction man, at ito ay base sa mga data o ebidensiya na ibibigay o isasampa doon sa ERC," Dureza said.

The ERC earlier ruled in favor of Meralco's petition to increase rates by as much as 36 percent but deferred the implementation of its ruling in the face of the strong protest mounted by the National Association of Electricity Consumers for Reforms (Nasecore) and individual consumers against the power rate increase.

But Dureza stressed that "kung mayroon na silang (ERC) desisyon based on evidence, at may resolution na, rerespetuhin natin, whether it is reduction or whether it is an increase," Malacanang will respect the decision.

He pointed out, however, that with the downtrend in the cost of fuel in the world markets, people expect this would also be reflected in the power rate charges.

"Kailangan dito sa power hike ay bigyan natin ng relief ang ating mamamayan dahil may downtrend ang cost of fuel from abroad… global prices have gone down so kailangan din, para maibsan ng konti ang mga problema at bigat, especially sa mga maliliit," Dureza said. (PIA-MMIO) [top]

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