Coal mining firm remits P16B in royalties to gov’t

Semirara Mining and Power Corp. (SMPC) chairman Isidro Consunji said the listed company’s remittance to the government as royalties in 2022 surged by 151 percent to nearly PHP16 billion. During SMPC’s virtual annual stockholders’ meeting Tuesday, Consunji said the firm posted its highest remittance to the government and host communities in 2022 for the past 25 years. The SMPC remitted PHP5.9 billion in royalties to the government in 2021. ‘Because of our all-time high coal revenues, government share surged by 151 percent to nearly PHP16 billion, the highest ever contributed by our company to the national government and our host communities,’ Consunji said. He reported that SMPC’s consolidated revenues last year increased by 74 percent to PHP91.1 billion from PHP52.4 billion in 2021, while net income also surged by 146 percent to PHP39.9 billion from PHP16.2 billion in the same comparable period. Likewise, the firm’s operating cash flow almost doubled to PHP40.8 billion in 2022, also a record-high for SMPC in the past 25 years from PHP21.3 billion in 2021. Consunji also reported that SMPC’s coal production grew by 19 times to 16 million tons last year — the maximum allowable capacity under its environmental compliance certificate — from 800,000 metric tons in 1997. He added SMPC’s domestic coal sales have powered 4,000 megawatts of power plants in the country, or accounting for 20 percent of the energy mix. ‘I am proud of our organization transformation, and even prouder of our meaningful contribution to national energy security and poverty alleviation,’ Consunji said. SMPC president Maria Cristina Gotianun said despite the 55-percent decline in coal shipments from China, the company’s coal sales only slipped by 3 percent last year. ‘We reduced our dependence on China and redirected our marketing efforts to local coal buyers,’ she said. Gotianun said the higher average selling prices for coal and electricity increased by double digit last year due to supply and demand imbalances in the global energy market. The appreciation of US dollar against Philippine peso and Japanese yen also led to foreign exchange gains from SMPC’s coal exports and Japan imports. Business expansion Meanwhile, Consunji bared SMPC’s plan to seek mining opportunities outside Semirara Island. The company is also open to venturing into liquefied natural gas (LNG) business. ‘The Calaca location is ideal for LNG as well as coal. So the question is really an issue of business viability, but basically and technically, there’s no reason why SMPC will not go to LNG,’ he added

Source: Philippines News Agency