New PNOC president initiates reforms

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The new president of Philippine National Oil Co. (PNOC) has reorganized and streamlined the functions of subsidiaries to maximize the government-owned company’s efforts at cutting inefficiencies and managing its finances properly.

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“All Department of Energy (DOE) officers and all government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs) related to DOE will move as one; we will help each other; there should be no duplication. Before, all the companies of PNOC did not coordinate, but that can’t be the case anymore,” PNOC president and CEO Reuben Lista said in an interview.

The PNOC subsidiaries are PNOC-Exploration Corporation, PNOC-Alternative Fuels Corporation, PNOC Shipping and Transport Corporation, PNOC Development and Management Corporation and PNOC Renewables Corporation.

Before taking the helm of the PNOC on November 16, Lista was a retired Admiral of the Philippine Navy and the 18th Commandant of the Philippine Coast Guard.

He vowed to bring back the old glory days of PNOC.

“PNOC has always been a holding company. Before they have been happy with their investments. They invest their equity of almost P8 billion and place 1.8 percent in banks so they make P144 million a year. They also get something from Malampaya as well as from the rentals of PNOC properties,” Lista said.

On September 2014, the Governance Commission for GOCCs (GCG) directed the PNOC to transform itself into an operations company and implement ongoing or incipient programs of some of its subsidiaries and any new program it may develop in the future.

“Secretary Cusi directed PNOC- EC—one of our subsidiaries—to concentrate on exploration, because it’s their mandate. PNOC-RC, meanwhile, will concentrate on renewable—biomass, solar, geothermal, hydro, ocean, wind. Starting next year, we’ll be entering coal and LNG trading,” Lista said.

“So now PNOC-EC will concentrate on exploration, and I told them to give me whatever is not related to exploration. This includes the Bauan property which they are leasing with us and subleasing to others,” he said.

“We’ll be operating the five-hectare property in Batangas. Initially they were going to use it as a solar power plant, but they found that there might be other usage options so we’ll help them in studying that.”

“As GOCC, we have to make money. And as president, it is my job to think of ways of how to make money for the company. We are currently inventorying all the assets we have,” he added.

PNOC has a coal terminal but they are studying whether to push through with coal or to just concentrate on LNG and LPG.

“We’re now talking with a lot of possible investors and partners. We’ve talked to a Turkish, two Japanese, a Singaporean, a Norwegian, and an Iranian investor. We also talked to local partners. Shell came in today and they will study the possibility of partnering with us. We’re partners now with SC 38.

SC 38 is the service contract that covers the Malampaya gas-to-power project.

Lista has written to PNOC-EC President P. A. Aquino Jr. regarding the transfer and turn-over of the administration and operation of the PNOC Energy Supply Base in Mabini, Batangas and the oil and coal trading operation.

This will allow PNOC-EC to concentrate on taking the lead in the exploration, development and production of oil, gas and coal resources.

“The transition activities and full turn-over of operations is intended to be completed within six months or until June 2017,” he added.

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