With the aim to promote and practice sustainable energy development in the Philippines, over 100 participants including policymakers, practitioners and stakeholders gathered at the Energy Policy and Development Program (EPDP) Conference 2016.
Also attending were scholars from Japan, the United States, and other parts of the Asia-Pacific region to discuss policy and research issues in energy.
Themed “Toward Inclusive and Sustainable Energy Development,” the energy conference held on January 12 and 13 in Makati City was organized by the US Embassy Manila’s United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the UPecon Foundation Inc..
In her remarks, USAID Mission Director Susan Brems, Ph.D., described the conference as “both timely and critical as it promotes best practices that can be used to design and implement economically-sound energy policies that will result in more cost-effective, sustainable, and reliable service.”
She also noted that for the Philippines to sustain its growth trajectory, industries and households should have access to stable, affordable, and environmentally-sound energy.
For his part, Socio-Economic Planning Secretary and National Economic and Development Authority Director General Arsenio Balisacan said that the conference is also significant because it aligns with the Philippine government’s commitment to inclusive growth and development.
“We recognize the need to continue to strengthen and improve the nation’s institutions, develop the country’s infrastructure, promote technological innovation, and pursue regulatory and structural reforms. We have to carry on policies and programs that will improve industries’ competitiveness and productivity, and this cannot be attained without an efficient, secure, and sustainable energy sector,” Balisacan said.
Some of the studies presented at the conference included: “The Principles of Electricity Policy” by EPDP Advisor Dr. James Roumasset and EPDP Program Director Dr. Majah-Leah Ravago; “Value Added Tax and the Cost of Doing Business in the Philippines: Their Relative Contribution to Electricity Prices and Economic Performance” by Dr. Ramon Clarete; and “Assessment of Philippine Power Sector Policy Landscape” by Dr. Ruperto Alonzo, Atty. Teresa Ira Maris Guanzon, and Peter Paul Taton. The complete list of studies can be accessed at www.upecon.org.ph/epdp.
EPDP, implemented by the UPecon Foundation Inc. through a grant from USAID, is a four-year project under the Partnership for Growth, a bilateral agreement between the Philippines and the United States to promote inclusive growth in the Philippines.
Beyond guiding an energy policy and reform agenda that promotes cost-effective and environmentally sound development, EPDP is helping to establish an academic and policy program at the University of the Philippines and informing private sector business strategies in ways that support sustainable economic development.