By Lenie Lectura – February 7, 2018
from Business Mirror
AC Energy Holdings Inc. expects to spend at least $300 million (P15.33 billion, at current exchange rates) for the solar-power projects AC Energy and its partner will develop in Vietnam, a top official of the company said on Wednesday.
“It’s around $1 million per 1 megawatt [MW],” AC Energy President Eric Francia told reporters on the sidelines of a forum.
The power business of conglomerate Ayala Corp. is developing over 300 MW of solar power in Vietnam. It has partnered with Vietnam’s BIM Group, which has a significant experience in business development in Ninh Thuan, the host province for the solar project.
HaLong Investment and Development (BIM Group) is a limited liability company, headquartered in Ha Long, Quang Ninh province.
AC Energy and BIM are starting with an initial phase of 30 MW, which broke ground on January 23, with Conergy Asia & ME Pte. Ltd. as construction partner. Investment for this phase is expected to reach 800 billion dong, or roughly P1.8 billion, and to be completed within the year.
Once completed, the solar project could be expanded by an additional 300 MW.
“AC Energy is very keen to participate in the fast-growing Vietnam power sector, with pioneering investments in renewable energy,” Francia had said. “We are delighted to partner with BIM Group, which has a significant presence in Ninh Tuan province, which, in turn, has among the best solar irradiance in the country.” Last year Francia said AC Energy eyed Vietnam because “the population, the growth potential, the market size, supply-demand outlook is similar to what we have here in the Philippines.”
“Indonesia is much larger in magnitude because of population,” he added. “But you have those elements of growth and size, and the infrastructure, supply gap.”
Also, Francia said Vietnam is offering a solar feed-in-tariff rate of 9.35 US cents per kilowatt-hour.
The move to develop renewable-energy (RE) projects overseas is in line with AC Energy’s plan to grow its presence in Southeast Asian markets. With more than $1billion of invested and committed capital, the company is positioned to exceed 2,000 MW of attributable generation capacity and scale up its RE portfolio to over 1,000 MW by 2020.
At end-2017, its attributable capacity has reached 1,600 MW.