The Philippines Sorting Out Uncertain Policies in Upstream Gas to Lure Investments

August 2022

Building new power plants, the use of renewable energy, and bringing down the price of electricity to consumers are the Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos’ priorities for the next six years of his administration.

“We must build new power plants. We must take advantage of all the best technology that is now available, especially in the area of renewable energy,” Marcos said in his first State-of-the-Nation Address on July 25, 2022.

Marcos pointed out that in the interim, natural gas will hold the key. “We will provide investment incentives by clarifying the uncertain policy in upstream gas, particularly in the area close to Malampaya,” he said.

Energy Secretary Raphael P. M. Lotilla has not yet provided details on the ‘policy fixes’ being framed by the Marcos administration, but he just hinted that this is currently sorted out by the legal cluster of the energy department.

Among the policies that need clarification or fixing, is the policy terrain of the sector, some provisions of Presidential Decree 87 or the Philippine Oil and Gas Law. Investors have repeatedly raised concerns over its antiquated provisions, and “weak data’ on the offered petroleum blocks.

(Sources: GMA News Online; Manila Bulletin; Philippine News Agency)

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