Department of Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla

MANILA – In line with the government's goal to fully energize the country, Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Raphael Lotilla has urged the country’s development partners to participate in building transmission infrastructure across the nation.

In his keynote speech at the World Bank's launch of Philippine Economic Update: Securing a Clean Energy Future in Taguig City Thursday, Lotilla said it is crucial to start building up transmission infrastructure in the country by cooperating with development partners such as the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to deliver electricity, especially in the remote areas.

Citing the Marcos administration's Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2023-2028, the government targets to upgrade the transmission and distribution lines to support an efficient to clean energy.

"The tragedy of Negros Island where you have 80 megawatts of stranded power is one that we do not wish to be replicated in the rest of the country and it has not been in that state for five to 10 years now," Lotilla said.

The DOE chief said the time to invest in transmission is now to prepare the infrastructure once the additional capacity of clean energy comes in the coming years.

"I pose the challenge for our development partners therefore to be up to speed in delivering the needed transmission capabilities," he said.

Lotilla said there is also an opportunity to synergize transmission lines with other infrastructure projects like bridges to lower the cost of building up parallel transmission lines.

"So, the potential for building bridges, whether it's across Manila Bay, Guimaras, Negros, Panay, and Pangil Bay, these are opportunities for building new transmission lines, along with the rights of way that are going to have been identified for the new BOT (build-operate-transfer) and PPP (public-private partnership) projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways. So, we see synergies here," he added. (PNA)