By The Manila Times


The P51.9-billion Mindanao-Visayas Interconnection Project (MVIP) has been certified as an energy project of national significance (EPNS), the first to be tagged as such under Executive Order 30 that aims to fast-track project approvals.

“We have approved the NGCP’s (National Grid Corp. of the Philippines) VisMin interconnection. It already has the certificate,” Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi told reporters.

“A corresponding Certificate of Energy Project of National Significance (CEPNS) for Commerciality has been issued in its favor,” the Energy Investment Coordinating Council said in a memorandum dated May 21, 2018.

NGCP said it remained on course to meet its completion target.

“We are thankful for this development. NGCP emphasizes the importance of this milestone project and we are determined to make our 2020 December commitment. This will certainly help us towards that goal,” the grid operator said in a statement.

The Energy Regulatory Commission issued a provisional authority for the project last September, noting that the project would address the problem of insufficient power supply.

Cusi, meanwhile, said that Atimonan One Energy, Inc’s 2×600-MW ultra super critical coal-fired power plant in Atimonan, Quezon was also slated to be affirmed as an EPNS.

The issuance of the CEPNS, however, is on hold given questions over Atimonan One Energy’s power supply agreement (PSA) with parent firm Manila Electric Co.

“[I]t might be misconstrued as my agreement to the PSA,” Cusi said.