MANILA – The Department of Energy (DOE) has met with other Cabinet members to iron out the country’s regulatory framework in the energy sector, DOE Secretary Raphael Lotilla said Tuesday.
In a virtual press conference, Lotilla said he had a virtual meeting with Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla, Solicitor General Menardo Guevarra, and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Juan Ponce Enrile on Monday as President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. instructed his legal cluster to provide clear policies for investors in the energy sector.
“We are addressing that, that desire of the President to make sure that the investment climate and then the legal environment for investments in the upstream become absolutely clear,” he said.
The DOE chief said that providing a certain, stable, and clear regulatory framework will attract much-needed investments in the energy sector.
Lotilla said exploring and utilizing indigenous energy sources is part of DOE’s strategies to achieve energy security, accessible and affordable energy, and shifting to a sustainable low-carbon future.
He added the country has untapped energy sources that will need capital from the private sector, in which the government can facilitate by providing clear policies.
“The President indicated that he wants to have all legal and policy issues… over investments in the upstream (be) clarified fully. And we will be sharing with you as soon as the way forward has been cleared by the legal cluster. But I want to assure you that we are on track towards the resolution on a number of these uncertainties,” Lotilla said.
In a Facebook post, Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles said Marcos has directed Lotilla to find ways to boost the country’s energy sector.
“Kasama natin kanina si Department of Energy Philippines Secretary Raphael Lotilla at sinabi niya na target ng ating pamahalaan na bumuo ng mga hakbang upang mabawasan ang pagiging dependent ng Pilipinas sa mga power resource na mula sa ibang bansa. Ito ay utos mismo ni Pangulong Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. sa Kagawaran ng Enerhiya (I was with Department of Energy Philippines Secretary Raphael Lotilla earlier today and he announced the administration’s plan to look for ways to make the Philippines less dependent from other countries’ power resources. That is the directive of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. to the Department of Energy),” she said.
This, as Cruz-Angeles cited the DOE’s report which found that the country’s energy imports were at 56.8 percent.
“Ayon sa datos ng DOE, nasa 56.8 percent ng kinakailangang enerhiya ng bansa ay imported, samantalang nasa 43.2 percent naman ang mula mismo sa ating bansa (Based on the DOE data, 56.8 percent of the country’s energy use are imported, while 43.2 percent come from our country),” Cruz-Angeles said.
Marcos, in his first State of the Nation Address delivered on July 25, underscored the need to build new power plants to raise the country’s energy supply. (With report from Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos/PNA)