Meralco unit seeks partners to boost generation capacity

by Lenie LecturaApril 26, 2016

from Business Mirror

MERALCO PowerGen Corp. (MGen), the power-generating arm of the country’s largest power-distribution firm, is making room for more power projects to meet its target of hitting 3,000 megawatts (MW) of power-generation capacity.

Manila Electric Co. President Oscar S. Reyes said MGen continues to develop other baseload and midmerit power-plant projects that will significantly contribute to a more robust power-supply situation with adequate reserves in the Luzon grid.

“Our 3,000-MW aspiration for our power-generation portfolio will be built through a mix of brownfield and greenfield developments, as well as acquisitions. We remain committed to be part of the solution to the current power situation to sustain economic growth,” Reyes said.

Reyes said MGen, with possible partners, is also eyeing to get involved in gas, wind, hydro and solar projects.

“We’re in discussions with other parties at this stage. Our potential partner doesn’t want to be identified. But it’s a mix of coal, gas, wind and hydro,” he said.

He said First Gen Corp. of the Lopez group remains a possible partner for an investment in a natural-gas plant, Meralco being an off-taker. “That’s part of the discussion,” Reyes said. MGen has already partnered with local and foreign power firms for three power projects that are progressing well.

San Buenaventura Power Ltd. Co. (SBPL), a joint venture of MGen and New Growth BV, a wholly owned subsidiary of Electricity Generating Public Co. Ltd. of Thailand, is putting up a 455-MW coal power plant in Mauban, Quezon.

It has already awarded the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract to South Korean firm Daelim and Japanese firm Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. The site-preparation contract, meanwhile was awarded to SC Megaworld Development Corp.

The project is targeted for completion in early 2019, 42 months from the issuance of Notice to Proceed (NTP).

Another coal project, a 600-MW power plant in Subic, is being undertaken by Redondo Peninsula Energy (RP Energy), a joint venture among MGen, Aboitiz Power Corp. and Taiwan Cogeneration Corp.

RP Energy has already signed a power-supply agreement (PSA) with Meralco for a substantial portion of its first 300-MW capacity. The balance of its capacity and energy, which was not contracted by Meralco, has been contracted by Aboitiz Equity Energy Solutions Inc., a RES entity of the Aboitiz group. The target commencement of construction is within 2016, with commercial operation expected in late 2019.

MGen is currently looking for partners for a 2×600-MW coal-fired power plant in Quezon.  Atimonan One Energy is the project proponent. The awarding of an Engineering, Procurement and Construction contract is targeted within the third quarter of the year. Target completion of Unit 1 is early-2021.

“We have started construction of the SBPL 455-MW supercritical coal-fired power plant. RP Energy is making good progress with respect to PSA negotiation, EPC contractor selection and financing, and we should be able to issue an NTP by the third quarter of the year. Development plans for Atimonan One are being phased and finalized,” Reyes said.

“In addition, we have expanded our pipeline of partnership and collaboration opportunities to ensure that our aspiration of 3,000 MW of new power plants of mixed-fuel types come into fruition,” Reyes added.