WLPGA Director David Tyler held meetings on 23rd August with the Philippines LPG Industry Association (LPGIA), together with the Department of Energy in Manila, to discuss progress on the government’s LPG Bill. The Bill had previously passed through Congress but its progress had stalled in the Senate following a lobbying campaign.
The Bill is aimed at addressing some of the illegal practices that have undermined the industry over the past years, including the illegal filling of cylinders. These practices have increased the risks in the distribution channel and undermined investment. Some companies have recently decided to withdraw from the market because of the situation.
During discussions with government about the need for levelling the playing field, in order not to further threaten the development of a safe and sustainable LPG industry, it was learned that another attempt will be made to pass the Bill into law later this year.
David also attended a LPGIA Board meeting and briefed members on some of the WLPGA programmes. There then followed a workshop with the LPGIA Board – which included members from Isla/Itochu, PR Gas, Petron and Brent – to discuss topics of current interest.
Several issues were raised including what role the WLPGA can play in support of the LPGIA, how to control business practices and the possibility of training members’ staff on LPG issues through the use of local educational establishments.
One LPGIA member claimed they had 400 personnel who needed regular training on issues relating to the safe and sustainable use of LPG. If they could arrange for that training to be done outside the company, and know it was delivered competently, it would be a great help. An option discussed was for the LPGIA to form a partnership with a local trade organisation using WLPGA endorsed training materials.
A joint communique was agreed which included the following:
- WLPGA will consider a follow up visit, to meet again with government, to assist in getting the LPG Bill through parliament.
- WLPGA will produce a short video – on the lines of those available on www.wlpga.org – to be shared with the government. It would stress the importance of strong and relevant legislation, backed up by effective enforcement measures and penalties for non-compliance, in support of good business practices.
- LPGIA will make a list of training topics, that could form the basis of a training pack with trainers’ notes, to be made available to educational establishments to train LPGIA staff members. LPGIA will send this to WLPGA for consideration.