Cagayan Economic Zone Authority administrator and CEO Raul L. Lambino (center), and Atty. Melvin Matibag (second from left) President and CEO of National Transmission Corporation (TransCo) gamely post with the signature President Rodrigo Roa Duterte fist bump during the signing of Memorandum of Understanding at CEZA’s main office in Mandaluyong City on November 22, 2019. Under the MoU, TransCo will help CEZA meets its objectives of ensuring adequate power supply, and providing reliable delivery of power, and reduce power rates in the Cagayan Freeport. Also in photo are TransCo Manager Renato Apilado (left), and CEZA Department Managers for Planning Rodney Cacatian and Atty. Frederick Madriaga of Legal. (JOSEPH MUEGO)
The Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) recently signed with the National Transmission Corporation (TransCo) a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to further develop a resilient and reliable power supply system in the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport (CSEZFP).
Secretary Raul L. Lambino, CEZA administrator, and chief executive officer said the signing of MoU between TransCo and CEZA would address the long-term problem of power supply facing by the locators in the zone.
“This is a very significant development for the Freeport, especially since the cost of electricity is very prohibitive. That is why we are delighted and looking forward to this new collaboration to deliver benefits to investors and locators alike,” Lambino said.
TransCo is a technical company owned and controlled by the government, with expertise in the development and operation of power facilities, and CEZA believes that TransCo is in the position to provide the support that it needs to meet the objectives of ensuring adequate power supply, providing reliable delivery of power, and reduce power, rates in the economic zones.
According to Lambino, collaborative efforts between CEZA and TransCo are expected to bring uninterrupted and more affordable cost of electricity that would immensely benefit the locators in the Freeport.
“This new collaboration with TransCo is in line with CEZA’s strategy to promote development in the zone. We now have a government committed to help CEZA and we are excited to be partnering with them as we have been impressed with their contributions to national economic development,” the secretary said.
Under the deal, the two companies will jointly assess locators’ power facilities, including the existing connection of Cagayan II Electric Cooperative Inc. (CAGELCO), to determine how to better deliver power to the freeport.
Once assessed, power development and operational plan will be prepared by TransCo which will also provide power system development, operation, and maintenance of power system and facilities, connection, metering, settlement, and similar services, technical support to CEZA facilities/utility group, including technical assistance to locators.
While CEZA aims to spur inclusive growth in Northern Luzon via a competitive fintech ecosystem in the Asia Pacific region, the agency is facing challenges in the attainment of its goals because its power supply is not yet developed and responsive to the requirements of a world-class economic zone.
“The partnership aims to develop a resilient and reliable power supply so we can turn the freeport into a world-class economic zone,” Lambino said.
For his part, Atty. Melvin A. Matibag, President and CEO of TransCo said: “We are looking forward to this exciting endeavor for more partnership and collaboration with CEZA, and we assure everyone that this project will be a legacy of the administration of our dear President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.”
The two parties have recognized their respective functions, resources, and interests that are complementary to national economic development through the efficient and reliable operation and maintenance of the power facilities in the freeport.