2 groups of ECs forge partnership to boost government’s rural-electrification program

TWO groups of electric cooperatives (ECs) formed a strategic partnership with the aim of pushing the electrification agenda forward in the national policy-making discussion as well as addressing recent challenges facing ECs.

The Philippine Rural Electric Cooperatives Association Inc. (Philreca) and Philippine Federation of Electric Cooperatives (Philfeco) described their move as an important milestone.

“Our combined strength and influence will hopefully accelerate key electrification programs and advocacies,” Philreca President Presley de  Jesus said.

De Jesus noted the partnership will present a unified position in addressing the planned entry of private corporate and business interests in a sector exclusively serviced by cooperatives and people’s organizations, a proposal ECs nationwide oppose.

Philfeco Chairman General Manager David Solomon Siquian of the Isabela II Electric Cooperative (Iselco II) noted the partnership shows the two groups are fully open to working together.

“The Philreca-Philfeco partnership shows a strengthened EC sector. Our alliance will hopefully inspire other ECs who we consider equal vanguards and warriors of light to do the same. Partnership and consolidation will hasten member-consumer-owners [MCO] empowerment and will accelerate sustainable rural development,” Siquian said.

The strategic partnership was agreed upon during the Philfeco Board meeting held at the Iselco II headquarters in Ilagan City, Isabela, last May 12.

Recently, Philreca issued a resolution approving the inclusion of Philfeco Chairman Siquian as an ex-officio member of the Philreca Board to represent the ECs registered with the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA).

The partnership drew praise from the state-run National Electrification Administration (NEA), which touted it as “crucially needed by the sector, and would benefit EC member-owners and end-consumers alike.”

“This strategic partnership paves the way for more free-flowing collaborative exchanges between ECs, especially the major players in the industry. The combined resources of Philreca and Philfeco promise vast potential in terms of service delivery and innovations in rural electrification,” NEA administrator Edgardo Masongsong  said.

Philreca is a non-stock, non-profit national organization comprised of 121 ECs operating in the country. Philfeco represents 12 ECs registered with CDA.

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