Vice presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Sunday said the next administration should speed up implementation of the country’s renewable energy (RE)program that will ease not only solve the power needs but also protect the environment.
The senator added that the next administration must vigorously increase the country’s RE capacity targets to make it at least 50 percent by 2030.
“We need to boost our renewable energy program and this should be prioritized to ensure economic development while protecting our environment,” he said.
According to the senator, some 70 percent of the nation’s electricity at present is generated from fossil fuels and 90 percent of which are imported.
“The next administration should be aggressive in increasing our renewable energy programs by encouraging companies to build more solar, wind and hydrogen power plants,” he said.
Marcos added that the government must give investors in RE additional perks on their investments and cut bureaucratic red tape.
It was learned that the Bureau of Investments (BOI) gives incentives to RE companies that include income tax holiday for seven years and duty-free importation of renewable energy machinery, among others.
These, however, those are not enough, saying more have to be given in order to encourage RE companies in doing their business here.
“Our government needs to give support for research and investigation of possible sites for RE endeavors and pilot locations as well as give them more tax exemptions in the production aspect,” Marcos said.
“Many of them are complaining about the slow processing of their applications for land conversion and other environmental clearance from the national level to the local level. This should be shortened or simplified,” he added.
“The government should ease the process of doing business in the country in general so that companies like those engaged in RE will be encouraged to invest here,” he added.
Marcos has championed RE, building the first wind farms in Southeast Asia while he was governor of Ilocos Norte in 2003, making it the country’s flagship projects for renewable energy.
He authored Senate Bill 2953 or the Act creating a Hydrogen Research and Development Center to support and encourage the use and development of hydrogen as an alternative source of energy.
JAIME R. PILAPIL