Ayala group inching closer to 1,000MW capacity target

by Myrna Velasco – May 22, 2016

from Manila Bulletin

The power generation arm of the Ayala group is now inching close to its 1,000 megawatts (MW) of attributable capacity target – with the anticipated take off of the blueprinted expansion of the Mariveles coal-fired power facility in Bataan.

That planned expansion of the facility will be for 1,200MW, but the initial phase has been intended at 600MW capacity. By then, the total development set as Mariveles coal plant would be for 1,800MW capacity including existing asset.

“If you include the Bataan unit 1 expansion, which we will start to break ground soon, we’ll be 1,000MW attributable capacity, which has been our target,” Eric T. Francia, president and chief executive officer AC Energy Holdings, Inc., said.

The Ayala group and its partners have been working on the award of the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract as well as financial closing for the project since last year.

Francia previously indicated that the loan procurement for that particular project alone would hover at $1.0 billion.

Via GNPower’s corporate vehicle, the Ayala group has been pursuing growth on power capacities’ portfolio – including the ongoing 540MW coal-fired plant in Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte.

The tie-up started with the operating 600MW Mariveles plant in Bataan; wherein the Ayala conglomerate’s power unit cornered 17-percent stake in GNPower back in 2014.  The other equity holders in the project include Sithe Global Power LLC, a company owned by investors of the Blackstone Group.

Francia previously noted that they have higher-end target of attributable capacity, which they see fulfilled at least until year 2019 with other planned projects, including renewable energy (RE) development ventures.

It is no secret that the Ayala group has also aspiration for gas-fed power capacities but that is a terrain that they are still navigating.

“We’ve participated in about 1,500MW worth of capacity.  That does not include yet the Bataan expansion. If you include that, it will be over 2,000MW because that’s 600MW,” Francia said.

He added “that’s where we are participating in – both operating and under construction. Of the 1,500MW, we are about 650MW attributable to us.”