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Palawan official calls for strong stand in Malampaya fund case

Aug 23, 2015 @ 4:11

A provincial board member of Palawan is asking the provincial government to make a strong stand in the recent developments in the province’s claim of shares in the earnings of the Malampaya gas facility.

1st District Board Member Winston Arzaga revealed that Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC) Exploration Corporation President and Chief Executive Officer Pedro Aquino, Jr. sent a letter to the Supreme Court (SC) debunking Palawan’s claim that Malampaya is part of the province.

“I suggest we make a strong resolution expressing our sentiments regarding this letter,” Arzaga told the provincial board as quoted by Palawan Times.

The SC is handling the case filed by Palawan contesting the national government on the shares from the proceeds of the project.

In his July 16, 2015 letter to SC, Arzaga said Aquino told the high court that the province is not entitled to receive a portion of royalty from the Malampaya Fund since the Malampaya platform that draws natural gas is located about 85 kilometers from the nearest town of Palawan, which is El Nido.

He said that because of the location of the platform it “is clearly beyond the Municipal and Provincial waters of Palawan.”

As part of a compromise agreement, Palawan gets a 20 percent share from the earnings of the gas facility. The province is demanding that it should get 40 percent.

Arzaga reiterated that the facility, located at the West Philippine Sea, is part of Palawan, so the provincial government should get 40 percent.

But in his letter, Aquino suggested that Palawan should only get 10 percent while the case is pending.

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