Cheaper electricity needed to save garment industry | Inquirer Business
Expensive power eroding PH competitiveness

Cheaper electricity needed to save garment industry

/ 02:03 AM September 06, 2022

An industry group of buyers and exporters of garments on Monday urged the government to enact measures to lower electricity costs in the country to compete with other Asian countries who are ahead in the textile business.

The Foreign Buyers Association of the Philippines (Fobap) told the Inquirer that the Marcos administration should address the high electricity cost in the Philippines for them to be more competitive with other Asian countries engaged in the same business.

“Our power cost is the number one problem. We are 50 percent more [expensive] than Vietnam, 30 percent more than Thailand, 40 percent more than Indonesia and 25 percent more than India,” said Robert Young, president and chair of Fobap, highlighting the substantial power price differences and their impact on manufacturing costs.


“Let’s avoid and disregard all the fantasy talk, and [we] should target the real core issue: bring down the power cost by whatever means,” he said further.


Young said the local garment and textile industry could grow by as much as 30 percent if the Philippines could bring the cost of electricity at par with its other Asian neighbors.

He added that had the government pushed to have the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant go online, electricity costs in the country would have been lower today.

The Philippines could well be on its way to become like South Africa, Young said, referring to the crippling costs of electricity in the country apart from its power outages of up to six hours a day.

Today, the Philippines is highly reliant on coal and diesel to fuel it power grid, meaning that the Southeast Asian country is also very vulnerable to price fluctuations in the global market.

Aside from high power costs, Young also called earlier for the government’s intervention amid the threat of layoffs in the local garment industry as fears of a recession in the United States dampen demand on garments and other wearables. INQ

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TAGS: Business, electricity

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