By Ben Rosario
The chairman of the House Committee on Energy lauded Friday President Rodrigo Duterte’s signing into law of the Energy Virtual Stop Shop (EVOSS) Act, saying that the move will encourage more investors and competition that would improve the country’s electric power situation.
Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco said Republic Act 11234 or EVOSS is expected to streamline the permitting process of power generation, transmission, and distribution projects would reduce the cost of doing business in the country, and encourage investors.
Under the new law, prospective power generation, transmission or distribution companies can apply, monitor and receive all the necessary permits, and even pay for charges and fees, through the online platform called EVOSS once it takes effect, cutting down the lengthy permitting process that has turned off investors in the past.
Velasco said the system will be managed and maintained by the Department of Energy (DOE), while its operations will be monitored by the EVOSS Steering Committee, the law says.
“There will be a marked reduction in the cost of doing business for power generation companies,” Velasco said. “
“This would encourage competition by attracting more power generation companies to invest in the country, and most importantly, this would translate to lower generation charges because of the reduced cost of doing business,” he stressed.
Former president and now Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo congratulated Velasco for steering the approval of the EVOSS bill in the Lower House.
Arroyo has strongly backed the measure as part of the legislative priorities under the Duterte administration.
Velasco said that by reducing the red tape in the permitting process of new power plants, the lawmaker said, more energy firms—foreign and local—would be lured into investing into the country.
“The usual cost of building power plants regardless of technology will be greatly lessened by EVOSS. We expect the electricity generation costs to go down because of lesser financial costs on the part of the investors,” Velasco said.
By stimulating the power generation investment in the country, EVOSS is seen to greatly help the Philippines prepare in addressing its energy requirements in the future, he added.