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ERC sees delay in resumption of reserve market operations

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THE Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) is seeing a delay in the resumption of the billing and settlement of amounts in the reserve market as the regulator still has to consult the stakeholders on the proposed price cap.

“We have already received many comments. It looks like it will be a long discussion, which may impact the timeline for the resumption of the reserve market because we definitely want the resumption to happen only when we have the offer floor and price cap,” ERC Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer Monalisa C. Dimalanta told reporters on Wednesday.

Ms. Dimalanta said that they have tracked “more than 100 comments from stakeholders”that they need to sort out.

She earlier said that the ERC is eyeing the reserve market to return to full operations on July 26, as it is tied to the billing cycle.

In a draft resolution, the ERC has proposed setting a floor price of P0 per megawatt-hour and a ceiling price of P19 per kilowatt-hour for trading power reserves.

The ERC has called on all interested parties to submit comments on or before July 8, with a public consultation set for July 11.

The reserve market allows the system operator to procure power reserves from the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) to meet the reserve requirements of the energy system.

In March, the ERC suspended the operations of the billing and settlement of the price determination methodology for the implementation of the co-optimized energy and reserve market in the WESM.

It said that the Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines reported significant price increases in reserve costs for March compared to February.

The regulatory body ordered the settlement of 30% of the amounts due on the reserve market transactions during the March billing month to allow power generators to partially recover their costs.

Citing simulations, the ERC projected the partial payments to be worth P1.7 billion, which has already been recovered during the June electricity billing.

The reserves traded for the March period were valued at P5.7 billion. 

The full commercial operations of the reserve market commenced in January. — Sheldeen Joy Talavera

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