Semirara seeks lifting of coal trade suspension
Danessa Rivera (The Philippine Star) - July 12, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Semirara Mining and Power Corp. (SMPC) has asked the Department of Energy (DOE) to lift the suspension order on its coal trading activities.

In an order dated June 4, the DOE directed SMPC to stop its coal trading activities and operations until further notice for violating the guidelines on the accreditation of coal traders and registration of coal end-users.

The company was also ordered to submit its verified answer allegedly for illegal coal trading operation in Pulupandan Port, Pulupandan, Negros Occidental until July 7.

 “On July 5, 2019, SMPC submitted its verified answer to the DOE with a prayer for the immediate lifting of the cease and desist order/suspension and for the non-imposition of any administrative fine. There is likewise an ongoing discussion with the DOE to have this matter resolved immediately,” SMPC said.

It has appealed to the DOE to allow the company to continue with its operations until the violation issue is resolved.

Last May 23, SMPC supplied Semirara coal to a buyer for a trial shipment of 4,768.73 metric tons (MT) “in order to tap additional market with representation on the part of the buyer that it has accordingly submitted and applied for a Coal Accreditation Certificate with the DOE on April 5, 2019.”

Under the rules, DOE will issue the certificate of accreditation and/or registration or reject the application within 15 working days from receipt thereof.

 “Unfortunately, on shipment date, the buyer was unable to submit the said accreditation as it was still pending with the DOE. Thereafter, SMPC discontinued its supply and any trading with said buyer,” the company said.

SMPC said it does not expect any material effects on its business, financial condition and operations.

SMPC is the only vertically integrated energy company in the Philippines that mines its own fuel source, coal.

As the country’s largest coal miner, Semirara has two operating mines in the Semirara Island in Antique, which are the Molave and Narra pits, where about 70 percent of its production for local demand, while the rest is for export.

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