The Philippines Department of Energy reports that the country’s renewable energy market will soon be fully open to foreign ownership.
Officials from the DOE stated that after changes to the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of the Renewable Energy Act are completed and signed, the agency wants the sector opened to 100 percent foreign ownership before the end of the month.
The DOE Assistant Secretary Mylene Capongcol added, “So, before November concludes. The proposed changes to the Renewable Energy Act’s IRR were already made available for public feedback and consultation last month.
The IRR amendment attempts to address the common concerns about whether or not biomass is available to 100 percent international participation in addition to changes in the inexhaustible indigenous resources that are clean, primarily ocean, wind, and solar. It also answers the question of whether geothermal is open to universal participation and how it can be done. At the same conference, DOE Undersecretary Felix William Fuentebella added, “Also for hydro.”
“So that is the clarification we are making in the IRR. Just that before the IRR amendments may be enacted, the law compels us to have a public consultation. Therefore, it will happen soon—hopefully by November of this year.
The Department of Energy (DOE) previously stated that limits on foreign ownership that impede the flow of investments in the renewable energy sector may now be lifted as a result of the Department of Justice’s legal opinion (DOJ).
A legal opinion supplied by the DOJ on September 29 to the agency resulted in good development and opened the door for foreign investments in renewable energy. In its decision, the DOJ stated that the 60:40 foreign equity restriction outlined in Section 2 of Article XII of the Constitution does not apply to the discovery, development, and use of limitless renewable energy sources.
However, the DOJ stated that the Renewable Energy Act of 2008, or the IRR of Republic Act 9513, must be changed to reflect the opinion.
The DOE has been working on the required changes to Rule 6, Section 19 of the IRR of the RE Law to address the IRR’s 40 percent equity cap for international investors.
According to a recent Department of Justice opinion, the industry is now accessible to 100% ownership. According to Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla, the opinion expedites the implementation of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s plans to develop the nation’s renewable and indigenous energy sources.