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Republic of the Philippines
Quezon City
Media Release
17 August 2010
Need for Strong Institutions Underscored in NEA-EC Conference
“There is a need for the electric cooperatives to be strong institutions for long-term
sustainability in the competitive electricity industry”, said Administrator Edita S. Bueno
as she addressed the 432 participants from 108 ECs and various local and foreign guests
during the NEA-EC Consultative Conference in Quezon City on August 3, 2010.
NEA Board Member Wilfred Billena, Mr. Nereus Acosta of AIM, DOE Secretary Jose Rene Almendras, BM Jose
Victor Lobrigo, BM Joseph Khonghun and Administrators Edita Bueno discuss issues and concerns with the
participants from the electric cooperatives during the NEA-EC Consultative Conference at the HES Auditorium in
Quezon City on August 3, 2010.
“NEA and the ECs want to be part of the solution and not the problems”, the
Administrator added.
Energy Secretary Jose Rene D. Almendras, who is also the Chair of the NEA Board of
Administrators, lent his support to the undertaking with his attendance to the said
conference. “Energy is such an important component of development. Electricity cuts
across the whole spectrum of demographic areas and demographic classes. That is why
NEA and the ECs are important components of the government initiative to bring
services to the rural areas. There are many challenges in the energy sector and the key is
to start finding the solution. We need to work together and to listen to each other. So, I
think your activity today is great”, said the DOE Secretary.
The conference is one of the highlights of the celebration of the 2nd National
Electrification Awareness Month (NEAM) which kicked-off with the holding of the
Family Day on August 1, 2010. Last year, former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo
signed Proclamation Order No. 1743 declaring August of every year as National
Electrification Month in recognition of the 40 year-old Rural Electrification Program’s
contribution to nation building and countryside development.
Administrator Bueno talked about “NEA-EC Decade of EPIRA Compliance, What Comes
Next?” wherein she discussed topics in the EPIRA that directly affect the operation of the
ECs. These include unbundling of rates; PSALM assumption of Rural Electrification
(RE) loans; EC transition supply contract; default wholesale supplier (DWS); power
supply contract; non-stock vs. stock ECs; competition facilities; wholesale electricity spot
market (WESM); Small Power Utilities Group (SPUG) privatization program; interclass
subsidy; guarantee funds; value added tax; wholesale aggregators; and retail electricity
suppliers (RES).
In deference to the new
workshop group mode for
the first time. This was
done for the participants
to communicate and
articulate issues and
concerns regarding their
cooperatives, the rural
electrification sector and
the electricity industry. It
was expected to generate
the best options, solutions
regarding these issues and
The participants were divided into five groups namely: Group I (Competitive Edge: Long
Term Sustainability); Group II (Good Governance – A Continuing Challenge); Group III
(People Advocacy: Meaningful & Responsible participation of member Consumers);
Group IV (EC Rewards & Options: Carrot & Stick Approach); and Group V (Woes &
Wailings of SPUG ECs). Workshop Directors are Deputy Administrators Mariano
Cuenco (Group I); John Joseph Magtuloy (Group II); Edilberto Bassig (Group IV) and
Edgardo Piamonte (Group V) with the NEA directors as facilitators.
The outputs of the groups were presented for critiquing to a panel composed of Mr.
Nereus Acosta of Asian Institute of Management, Professor Rowaldo Del Mundo and
Ms. Edna Espos, both of the University of the Philippines – National Engineering Center
and Fr. Jose Victor Lobrigo of the NEA-Board of Administrators. A consolidated copy of
the groups’ output was submitted to Secretary Almendras.###