Spanish firm seeks comeback in PH power sector

by Riza T. Olchondra, 11 March 2015
from Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines–Spanish company GasNatural Fenosa is seeking partners to be able to reinvest in the Philippine power industry.

The company, which used to have a minority stake in the Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), is interested in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector, as well as power generation and distribution, director for business development and promotion David Gallardo told reporters.

“We want to come back to the Philippines,” he said, adding that the company is already in initial talks with various companies, including Meralco.

The Spanish company is open to partnerships on LNG, coal, and combined cycle technology as well as renewable energy.

Gallardo said the company wanted to see the government’s energy master plan and the place of LNG in its overall scheme, as well as firm regulation that clearly spells out support for energy investors.

For example, Gallardo said, “What is the plan of the government once Malampaya (natural gas field) is finished? What are the possibilities that are on the table? Where (is) the gas coming?”

To pursue the investment plan, the company needs finance, he said, and to have fair recovery of investment.

“We are working and we need our money back, fair money,” he said.

GasNatural Fenosa, a 175-year-old company, unloaded its indirect 28-percent stake in Meralco in 2008.

It is the biggest integrated gas and electricity company in Spain.

The company is the third-biggest distributor of gas and electricity in the Iberian market with assets worldwide, especially in Latin America.

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