By Myrna M. Velasco
Of the humongous ₱59.23 billion that it is bound to pursue for settlements, state-run Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation (PSALM) indicated that it already collected this year about ₱2 billion of such long unpaid dues.
“We already collected ₱2 billion for this year alone. That’s non-current and these arrears have been there since the time of NPC (National Power Corporation), yet we were able to collect,” PSALM President Irene Joy B. Garcia said.
These unpaid liabilities have been settled by different entities – those that were sent with demand letters by PSALM.
“We were able to get collections from power customers and electric cooperatives. We had those unremitted receivables,” she explained.
Garcia qualified there were also power utilities that had not remitted their collections of universal charges (UCs), hence, these are among the amounts now being pursued by PSALM for turnover.
“There were UCs for power accounts that have not been settled for a really long time, so now, we are already seeing them remitting to us,” the PSALM chief executive emphasized.
For some power utilities, she expounded that a number opted for partial payments, “but at least we can see that we are moving because we are collecting installments from these clients.”
It has to be noted that Finance Secretary and PSALM Board Chairman Carlos G. Dominguez III had instructed the government-run power firm to go after customers and clients that have unsettled dues with the company.
At that time, PSALM reported that it has ₱59 billion worth of receivables, but some cannot be immediately pursued because of pending legal cases.
For the privatized power supply agreements (PSAs) of the independent power producers (IPPs), the registered liabilities from end-2018 reckoning period had been at ₱28.46 billion.
PSALM has likewise been pursuing collectibles from other customers – mainly electric cooperatives that it has been supplying power to, but had not been current on their payments due to dilemmas of low collection efficiency.
PSALM has been chasing these unpaid dues so it will have additional cash to defray maturing obligations –primarily before its life cycle winds up in 2026.