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SN Aboitiz Power-Magat, Inc. (SNAP-Magat) and the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) have signed a Settlement and Release Agreement pertaining to the prospective treatment and settlement of outstanding issues relating to the interpretation of the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) agreement between the two parties on unutilized water for power generation, applicable water fee during spilling conditions, and its periodic adjustments.
The ceremonial signing, which observed Covid-19 safety and health protocols, was held on August 3, 2021 at the NIA compound in Quezon City, led by SNAP-Magat President and CEO Joseph Yu and NIA Administrator General Ricardo Visayas. NIA Deputy Administrator for Administrative and Finance General Romeo Gan and SNAP-Magat Vice President for Corporate Affairs Michael Hosillos stood as witnesses.
The settlement agreement was finalized following years of discussions and negotiations on the topics. The O&M agreement covers the non-power components of the Magat dam, which are owned, managed, and operated by NIA primarily for irrigation purposes and secondarily for power generation.
As part of the settlement, SNAP-Magat turned over service fees amounting to PhP19.9 million to NIA, and will continue good faith negotiations to reach a mutually acceptable resolution to the remaining discussion points.
In his remarks, Administrator Visaya cited the importance of water and power services, potential partnerships with SNAP, and resolving conflict through cooperative discussion. “I am truly delighted that we have come to this point after so many years,” he said. “On behalf of the top management and personnel of NIA, I would like to thank SNAP. This will be a big help in the rehabilitation of the Magat dam and reservoir.”
SNAP-Magat’s Yu said that the agreement is “proof that through collaboration and dialogue we can solve complicated issues and arrive at an agreement that benefits everybody. By working together the way we do, that‘s how we support our stakeholders and provide sustainable services to them.”