Published April 17, 2017, 10:01 PM by Tara Yap
Guimaras — The power supplier and distributor of this island province is being asked to refund the P47.6 million in capacity fees it charged its customers.
The Guimaras Provincial Board urged the supplier, Phinma Energy Corp. (formerly Trans-Asia Oil and Energy Development Corp.), and the distributor, Guimaras Electric Cooperative (Guimelco), to refund the fees which it said was illegally collected.
Vice Governor John Edward Gando said consumers paid additional fees for 17 months despite the expiration of the contract between supplier Phinma Energy and distributor Guimelco.
Gando told Manila Bulletin that Guimelco consumers, who have complained of repeated blackouts, were paying an average of P2.8 million a month between June, 2015, when the contract expired, and December , 2016.
The charges were made after the then Trans-Asia Oil built a 3.4-megawatt (MW) diesel-fed station to directly supply Guimelco.
Gando protested that consumers were overcharged for the capacity fees after Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) revealed that the power station was built at a cost of P115 million.
The fees collected amounted to P336 million from June 2005 to June 2015.
Meanwhile, Guimaras is not benefiting from the 54-MW wind farm built by Phinma Energy’s subsidiary, Trans-Asia Renewable Energy Corp. (TAREC), in San Lorenzo town.
The power the wind farm produces goes to other Visayan islands.