November 8th, 2009
By MYRNA M. VELASCO
November 7, 2009, 3:02pm
To fortify the operational viability of the country’s electric cooperatives, the Enhanced Lending Program of the National Electrification Administration (NEA) made possible the release of close to P1 billion loans to rural power utilities in the first nine months this year.
The 48 EC-beneficiaries of the P908 million loans availed of the facility for various purposes, including calamity and concessional loans, and those intended for upgrading and expansion of their distribution networks. Others allocated them at paring down their system losses.
The NEA-ELP facility for the ECs is being offered at a very competitive interest rate of 9.0 percent per annum for those to be repaid over a stretch of more than two years; and 8.0-percent per annum for loans payable within two years or less.
“The other features of the program also include no other charges for term loans; longer repayment period, i.e. from 3-5 or 5-10 years; fast processing period; electronic fund transfer; minimum requirements; assistance in the preparation of Project feasibility Study; and personalized service,” the electrification agency has expounded.
It disclosed that the coop-beneficiaries of calamity loans include Central Pangasinan Electric Coop (Cenpelco) for P20 million; Ifugao Electric Coop (Ifelco) for P1.09 million; Zambales Electric Coop (Zameco) for P2.25 million and Romblon Electric Coop (Romeco) for P11.12 million.
These power utilities reportedly earmarked such borrowings for “the rehabilitation of their damaged distribution system wrought by typhoons “Cosme,” “Emong,” “Kiko” and “Feria,” among others.
Credit lines intended for reduction of system loss were granted to 16 ECs, purportedly “to assist them in the reduction of their annual systems loss by at least 1.0% yearly and thereby improve system reliability.”
These are: La Union Electric Coop (Luelco) for P12 million; Kalinga Apayao Electric Coop (Kaelco) for P1.19 million, Pampanga Rural Electric Service Coop (Presco) for P7.16 million; Pampanga II Electric Coop (Pelco II) for P10.4 million; Marinduque Electric Coop (Marelco )for P3.73 million; Iloilo Electric Coop (Ileco III) for P12 million; Antique Electric Coop for P12 million; Biliran Electric Coop (Bileco) for P12 million; Samar Electric Coop (Samelco II) for P12 million; Eastern Samar Electric Coop (Esamelco) for P9.0 million; Zamboanga del Sur Electric Coop II for P11.1 million; Zamboanga City Electric Coop (Zamcelco) for P12 million; Misamis Oriental Electric Coop (Moresco I) for P18 million; Sultan Kudarat Electric Coop (Sukelco) for P12 million; South Cotabato Electric Coop (Socoteco I) for P12 million; and Agusan del Norte Electric Coop (Aneco) for P12 million.
NEA explained that the ECs’ core activities toward reduction of system loss include “purchase and replacement of power transformers, meter pole clustering, rehabilitation of defective lines and replacement of defective kilowatt hour meters, and installation of grounding transformers, gas circuit breakers, system power protectors and/or kWh meters.”
Meanwhile, a concessional loan of P93 million with 5.0 percent annual interest rate has been extended to Cagayan Electric Coop (Cagelco II) for the construction of 17 kilometers of 69-KV sub-transmission line and for the installation of 10 MVA substation.
The Lubang Electric Coop (Lubelco), on the other hand, availed of P4.98 million loan for rehabilitation of its distribution lines, replacement of kWh meters and vehicle purchases. The loan facility carries 4.0-percent interest rate per annum.
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