Universal Charge
Administration of Universal Charge

Lighting the countryside: PSALM continues to significantly contribute to government efforts to provide a steady and reliable supply of electricity in the country's far-flung areas.

Communities in these areas get much-needed electric power through PSALM’s prudent management and disposal of the collections from the Universal Charge (UC) for Missionary Electrification (UC-ME).

A non-bypassable charge mandated under Section 34 of the EPIRA, the UC is imposed on electricity consumers for the following purposes:

  1. Missionary electrification;
  2. Payment for stranded debts and stranded contract costs;
  3. An environmental charge for watershed rehabilitation and management;
  4. Equalization of taxes and royalties applied to indigenous or renewable sources of energy vis-à-vis imported energy fuels; and
  5. A charge to account for all forms of cross-subsidies.

At present, only the UC-ME and the UC for Environment and Watershed Rehabilitation and Management (UC-EWRM) amounting to PhP0.0025 per kilowatt-hour are imposed on and are being collected from electricity consumers.

The UC is collected monthly by the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines and the distribution utilities based on the approval of the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC). The collections are remitted to PSALM every 15th of the following month.

Universal Charge (UC) Administration

  1. Universal Charge Remittances, Interests and Disbursements
  2. As of 30 September 2018, remittances of collecting entities (CEs) to PSALM amounted to PhP160.359 billion, while interest earnings from deposits and placements of UC funds amounted to PhP0.166 billion. On the other hand, UC fund disbursement amounted to PhP159.410 billion. Below are the details of UC remittances, interests and disbursements:

    Universal Charge Remittances, Interests and Disbursements
    As of 30 September 2018 (In PhP Billion)

    Particulars Remittances Interests Disbursements Balance
    Special Trust Funds: Missionary Electrification (ME) - NPC SPUG 83.169 0.044 83.194 0.019
    ME - Renewable Energy Developer Cash Incentive (REDCI) 0.553 0.004 0.272 0.285
    Environmental Charge (EC) 2.174 0.106 1.491 0.789
    Stranded Contract Cost (SCC) 72.359 0.011 72.351 0.019
    Stranded Debts 2.104 0.001 2.102 0.003
    Total 160.359 0.166 159.410 1.115

    1Includes Disbursement to Oriental Mindoro Electric Cooperative, Inc. (ORMECO) in the total amount of PHP40,442,954.47, for the recovery of fuel costs chargeable against the UC-ME fund, pursuant to ERC Orders dated 16 June 2014 and 24 September 2014 covering ERC Case No. 2013-191 RC.

    22Balance includes CEs’ remittances during the period 18-20 September 2018 which were deposited to the Main Trust Account (MTA) but will be transferred to each UC-STF on 19 October 2018, pursuant to Section 7 (c) of the ERC approve Guidelines and Procedure Governing Remittances and Disbursement of the UC Guidelines.


    The following disbursements/fund transfers were made from the respective UC Special Trust Fund (STF):

    1. UC-ME and EC

      • PHP83.194 billion and PHP1.491 billion were paid to NPC, chargeable against the UC-ME and EC fund, respectively, in accordance with the provisions of the EPIRA and the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) decisions/orders.
    2. UC-SCC

      • PHP72.351billion was transferred from the UC-SCC STF account to PSALM’s UC-SCC Special Fund Account (SFA), following the PSALM Board-approved Guidelines and Procedures on Disbursement and Utilization of UC-SCC of NPC.
    3. REDCI

      • Cash incentive totaling PHP0.553 billion was paid to the following renewable energy (RE) developers, in accordance with the ERC-approved Rules to Govern the Availment and Disbursement of Cash Incentive to RE Developers Operating in Missionary Areas:
        1. Romblon Electric Cooperative, Inc. (ROMELCO) for the 900 kW Cantingas Mini Hydro Power Plant Corporation (CHPC);
        2. Sunwest Water and Electric Co. (SUWECO) for the 1.5 MW Hitoma 1 & 2.1 MW Solong Hydroelectric Power Plants; and
        3. ORMECO for the 2.1 MW Linao Cawayan Mini-Hydro Power Plant (LCMHPP) - Lower Cascade.

        Accounting for the inflows and outflows of the UC fund leaves it with a balance of about PHP1.115 billion as of September 2018.

      • Remittances for CY 2018

        For the period of January to September 2018, PSALM received PhP22.748 billion in UC remittances, broken down as follows:

        UC Remittances to PSALM
        For the Period January to September 2018 (In PHP Billion)

        Month ME (NPC-SPUG) ME (REDCI) EC SCC SD Total
        January 1.045 0.012 0.017 1.312 0.176 2.562
        February 0.997 0.011 0.016 1.246 0.170 2.440
        March 0.908 0.010 0.015 1.133 0.153 2.219
        April 0.986 0.010 0.016 1.227 0.169 2.408
        May 0.977 0.011 0.016 1.218 0.168 2.390
        June 1.163 0.014 0.018 1.435 0.189 2.819
        July 1.109 0.012 0.018 1.342 0.185 2.666
        August 1.104 0.012 0.019 1.377 0.189 2.701
        September 1.042 0.011 0.017 1.294 0.179 2.543
        Total 9.331 0.103 0.152 11.584 1.578 22.748

      • Disbursements for September 2018

        For the period of January - September 2018, PSALM disbursed a total amount of PHP23.087 billion to UC beneficiaries as follows:

        UC Disbursements of PSALM
        For the Period January to 30 September 2018 (In PhP Billion)

        Month ME (NPC-SPUG) ME (REDCI) SCC1/ SD Total
        January 1.040 0.007 1.299 2.346
        February 1.020 0.001 1.274 2.295
        March 0.897 0.011 1.123 1.0242/ 3.055
        April 0.987 0.003 1.232 0.170 2.392
        May 0.972 - 1.052 0.165 2.189
        June 1.168 0.002 3/ 0.191 1.361
        July 1.102 0.017 2.942 0.182 4.243
        August 1.114 2/ 1.383 0.191 2.688
        September 1.040 0.001 1.298 0.179 2.518
        Total 9.340 0.042 11.603 2.102 23.087

        1/March 2018 disbursement covers remittances from September 2017 to March 15, 2018.

        2/No REDCI claim was received during the months of May 2018 and August 2018.

        3/ The ERC-approved UC-SCC in the amount of PhP12.877 billion in its Order dated 06 August 2018 under ERC Case Nos. 2013-160 RC and 2014-111 RC was fully disbursed on 21 May 2018.


        For the period of January to September 2018, PSALM disbursed PHP9.340 billion to NPC-SPUG to fund the missionary electrification functions, chargeable against the UC-ME fund. This is pursuant to the following ERC Decisions/Orders:

        Date Particulars ERC Case No.
        12 August 2013 ERC Decision on CY 2011 True-up Adjustments (PhP4.651 billion) 2012-085 RC
        10 October 2013 ERC Decision on CY 2010 True-up Adjustments (PhP2.566 billion) 2012-046 RC
        03 November 2013
        & 17 August 2015
        ERC Order on CY 2015 UC-ME Subsidy 2014-135 RC
        20 April 2015 ERC Order on CY 2014 UC-ME Subsidy (PhP2.763 billion) 2012-085 RC

        In accordance with the ERC decision dated 28 January 2013 under Case No. 2011-091 RC, the amount of PHP11.603 billion was transferred from the UC-SCC STF to the UC-SCC SFA for the month of January – September 2018.


  3. ERC - Approved UC Rates
  4. The table below shows the ERC-approved UC rates being implemented as of 30 September 2018:

    Type PhP/kWh
    UC-ME 0.1561
    UC-EC 0.0025
    UC-SCC 0.1938
    Total 0.3789

    On 03 November 2014, the ERC issued an Order provisionally approving the instant petition filed by NPC on the proposed Subsidized Approved Generation Rate (SAGR) and the UC-ME for years 2015 to 2016. NPC was authorized to extend the implementation of the current CY 2014 UC-ME subsidy amounting to PhP0.1561/kWh from January 2015 to August 2015, broken down as follows:

    Particulars CY 2015
    January-May
    (PhP/kWh)
    June-August
    (PhP/kWh)
    UC-ME Subsidy 0.0454 0.1163
    Cash Incentive for RE Developers 0.0017 0.0017
    True-up Adjustment (2011) 0.0709 0.0000
    True-up Adjustment (2010) 0.0381 0.0381
    Total 0.1561 0.1561

    Further, the ERC issued an Order dated 17 August 2015 extending the provisional authority it granted under the ERC Order dated 03 November 2014, until revoked or made permanent by the ERC.