by Lenie Lectura, 12 March 2015
The National Electrification Administration (NEA) has provided loans amounting to P2.534 billion to 67 electric cooperatives (ECs) last year.
Of the amount, P829 million went to ECs that were badly hit by typhoons Yolanda, Santi and Glenda. The amount was later converted to subsidies.
Some P203 million was borrowed by eight ECs to finance their monthly shortfall on the settlement of their power accounts with the power-generation companies and National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP).
Meanwhile, Pelco (Pampanga Electric Cooperative) III and Casureco (Camarines Sur Electric Cooperative) I availed of the stand-by credit loan facility amounting to P30 million and P13.125 million, respectively.
Three co-ops in Mindanao secured loans for the procurement of modular generator set in anticipation of the shortfall of power supply in the island during summer. These are Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative (P19.697 million), Misamis Oriental Rural Electric Service Cooperative I (P12.194 million) and Zamboanga City Electric Cooperative (P105.285 million).
Meanwhile, Marelco, Ileco II, Ceneco, Buseco and Moresco I used the Single-Digit System Loss Loan Facility to further decrease their system losses through either acquisition or commissioning of substations, upgrading of overextended and overloaded distribution lines and purchase of kilowatt-hour meters.
NEA processed 84 financial packages vis-à-vis its target of 53 last year. It has, likewise, posted a 100-percent collection efficiency on the loan amortization payments of the ECs.
“As part of NEA’s mandate, the agency has developed a credit-guarantee program and facility for the ECs. This is to establish a power supply guarantee to secure the power purchase of qualified ECs in the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market, Interim Mindanao Electricity Market or under a bilateral contract with the generation companies or the NGCP,” NEA Administrator Edita Bueno said.
“NEA also continues to find ways to make funds readily available for the ECs, particularly in times of natural and man-made calamities for them to better serve their member-consumers,” she added.
Loan availment by the ECs is included in the fast-track lane being implemented by NEA. The average number of days to release a loan is 10 working days.