PH gov't assures enough supply amid Luzon-wide quarantine

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 15) — Supplies of power, water, rice, and food will not be scarce amid the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon, the Philippine government assured the public.

Cabinet Secretary and Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) Spokesperson Karlo Nograles said in a virtual press conference Wednesday that there will be adequate power supply in Luzon, as reported by the Department of Energy (DoE).

"For the power demands in Luzon, the Department of Energy reports that we have an available capacity of 11,795 MW, which is greater than the actual peak demand of 7,323 MW in Luzon," Nograles said.

This means we currently have an excess capacity of 4,742 MW. Lubos din ang suplay natin ng kuryente [rito] po sa Luzon,” he added.

[Translation: This means we currently have an excess capacity of 4,742 MW. We have enough power supply here in Luzon.]

The Task Force spokesman likewise stated that there is sufficient water supply for residents of the National Capital Region (NCR) until the end of the Luzon-wide quarantine.

He said the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) has given the full water allocation of 46 cubic meters per second to the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) from the Angat Dam until April 30, 2020 to ensure the stable supply of water in Metro Manila.

"Makakaasa po tayo na tuloy-tuloy po ang daloy ng tubig dito po sa NCR sa kalagitnaan ng enhanced community quarantine o ECQ," Nograles said.

[Translation: You can expect continuous water supply here in NCR during the enhanced community quarantine or ECQ.]

Nograles also guaranteed that food supply will not be an issue in Luzon amid the coronavirus crisis.

Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez gave assurance of the same.

"Sa pagkain ho, wala tayong problema. In fact, mga 80-90% ang production capacity [natin]," Lopez said over a televised briefing.

[Translation: We have no problem in food supply. In fact, we have about 80-90% production capacity.]

As for the stocks of rice, there is more than enough, according to National Food Authority (NFA) Administrator Judy Carol Dansal.

"Hindi lang sapat, sobra," Dansal said in the same briefing.

[Translation: (We have) not just enough, but more than enough.]

Victor "Bruce" Tolentino, former Deputy Chief of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), and now a Monetary Board member, previously stated that rice supply is not a cause for concern since the NFA has adequate supply.

Agriculture Secretary William Dar also earlier allayed fears of a rice shortage, saying current stocks are more than sufficient to see the country through the enhanced community quarantine period.

The Luzon-wide quarantine will be in place until April 30, unless earlier lifted or further extended by the Philippine government.