Sunday, June 29, 2014

Lanao del Norte power complex to be constructed

Business World Online
Posted on June 29, 2014 09:44:29 PM

DAVAO CITY -- GNPower Kauswagan Ltd. Co., which is building four coal-fired power plants with a combined capacity of 540 megawatts (MW) in Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte, has committed a huge chunk of its projected electricity output to 20 Mindanao electric cooperatives.

In an e-mail sent to BusinessWorld, the company, a joint venture between the Ayala-owned AC Energy Holdings, Inc. and Power Partners Ltd. Co., said it is expecting to start construction of the facility in September this year.

It is targeted for completion in 2017.

The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has approved the purchase supply agreements between the local electric cooperatives although GNPower said it is scouting for more customers for the roughly 200 MW in its capacity.

“(We are looking at) the Interim Mindanao Electricity Market and private distributing utilities,” the company said in the statement.

In its April 28 order on the purchase supply agreements, ERC told the power generating company and the electric cooperatives that the generator should deal with each of the cooperatives and not through an aggregator, identified as the Association of Mindanao Rural Electric Cooperatives Power Supply Aggregator Corp.

“Each (participating electric cooperative) shall be liable to GNPower,” ERC ruled.

The commission added that it will still resolve the participation of the aggregator, or the cooperatives association, in the said supply deal.

GNPower said it has secured all the documents necessary to build the power plants, including an environmental compliance certificate, and has signed up with the China-based Shanghai Electric Power Construction Co. for the construction of the project.

In an earlier statement, the company said the project “will be equipped with cutting-edge equipment, including four steam turbines and generators manufactured in Germany.

“We recognize that Mindanao is in dire need of power and we are keen to provide the needed capacity at very reasonable and affordable terms,” company president John Eric T. Francia said.

Mr. Francia added that the project “puts us on track to achieve our goal of developing over 1,000 MW of attributable capacity both in conventional and renewable technologies by 2016.”

The Ayala power company early this year acquired 17% of GNPower Mariveles Coal Plant Ltd. Co., operator of a 600-MW coal-fired power plant in Mariveles, Bataan that started operating in April.

Big power companies have only started their new projects in Mindanao in 2009, when the Alcantara-owned Conal Holdings Corp. announced it was building a 200-MW coal-fired power plant in Sarangani province.

In 2010, the Aboitiz Power Corp. announced its 300-MW coal-fired project, which will be under Therma South, Inc., is expected to be operational in the first quarter of next year even as the company secured the approval of its expansion to 645 MW from the city council.

The Alcantara project also announced that it will also start operating next year.

Another Aboitiz company, Hedcor, Inc., has been building small hydroelectric plants in Davao del Sur and Bukidnon. Its projects in Davao del Sur, which have been providing power to the franchise areas of sister company Davao Light and Power Co., and those of the Davao del Sur Electric Cooperative, have a combined capacity of about 65 MW.

In its report on the 2013 power supply-demand outlook, the Department of Energy noted that the Mindanao grid has been experiencing “under-generation” since 2010. It also said half of the region’s plants are hydroelectric and affected by weather conditions.” -- Carmelito Q. Francisco source

Thursday, June 26, 2014

PSALM wants to recover P1.041B

Business World Online
Posted on June 26, 2014 10:57:10 PM

STATE-OWNED Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) wants to adjust generation charges to account for over- and under-recoveries -- totalling P1.041 billion -- that were incurred last year.
Power rates will go up in the Visayas but drop in Luzon and Mindanao under PSALM’s recovery petition.

PSALM, in a June 26 petition, asked the Energy Regulatory Commission to authorize an increase in National Power Corp. (Napocor) rates in Visayas and reductions in Luzon and Mindanao.

The adjustments cover P790.27 million in power purchase costs and P251.02 million in foreign-exchange related costs.

PSALM asked for a five-year recovery period for rates in Visayas, which means a P0.1537 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) increase.

One-year refund periods, on the other hand, were sought for rates in Luzon and Mindanao, equivalent to P1.8449/kWh and P0.2821/kWh, respectively.

PSALM’s petition covers the costs of maintaining the ten state-owned power facilities.

The adjustments used to be implemented via the generation adjustment rate mechanism (GRAM) and incremental currency exchange rate adjustment (ICERA) schemes.

Napocor, through PSALM, started implementing automatic rate adjustments in 2010, with a 12-month review resulting in either a refund or recovery of costs.

The GRAM and ICERA mechanisms are still applied with respect to Napocor customers in off-grid areas. Earlier this month, Napocor sought regulatory approval to recover P1.833 billion under the GRAM and P8.068 million under ICERA.

PSALM was created under the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 to assume ownership of and manage all of Napocor’s assets, liabilities, contracts with independent power producers, real estate and other disposable assets. -- Claire-Ann Marie C. Feliciano source

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Cotabato power firm gets franchise

By John Unson (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 21, 2014 - 12:00am

COTABATO CITY, Philippines – Congress has granted the Cotabato Light and Power Co. (Colight) an imprimatur to expand its services to the Maguindanao towns of Datu Odin Sinsuat and Sultan Kudarat.

The utility firm has regularly been upgrading its service facilities to ensure connectivity in the two towns, both in Maguindanao’s first district.

The expansion of Colight’s service to the two towns is based on a congressional franchise embodied in Republic Act 10637 signed by President Aquino last June 16. source

Friday, June 20, 2014

NGCP’s Sy cites economy of grid connectivity

Business Mirror
20 Jun 2014 Written by Lenie Lectura

THE National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) on Friday cited the benefits for power consumers whose distribution utility (DU) is connected to the grid rather than sourcing 100 percent of electricity requirements from independent power producers (IPPs).

For instance, Panay Electric Co. (Peco) is on an island mode and draws 100 percent of its requirement from bilateral contracts with Panay Energy Development Corp. and Panay Power Corp., affiliates of Global Business Power Corp., while the rest of the DUs are grid-connected.

If a DU is grid connected, it can obtain its power supply from other sources such as the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM). As the grid operator, it is the NGCP’s role to transport the power to the DU.

Peco, according to the NGCP, charges its residential customers a generation rate of P7.5384 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) as of December 2013. By comparison, other DUs in the Visayas that are connected to the grid and, therefore, sourced their supply not only from IPPs billed a much lower generation rate to their residential customers. For instance, the generation rate of Iloilo Electric Cooperative (Ileco) stood at P5.1819 per kWh in December last year.

NGCP President Henry Sy Jr. highlighted the benefits of connecting to the transmission grid. “Grid connection has its advantages. We can import supply from Luzon if there is supply deficiency in the Visayas. Our customers are also able to enjoy lower generation charges because grid connection makes it possible for them to get electricity from cheaper energy sources, including the WESM,” he explained.

“When power-sharing is made possible by grid connection, power-sourcing is not limited to a single supplier. Limited sourcing of electricity from only one or two generation companies leads to high generation cost because of the captive nature of the market. Connecting to the grid gives the customers the option to negotiate better prices from a larger pool of suppliers. In case one supplier breaks down, alternative power sources may be available from the WESM or the HVDC [High-Voltage Direct Current]. We are giving customers the power of choice,” Sy added. By implementing the sharing of power between Luzon and the Visayas through a submarine cable, NGCP was able to help electric cooperatives (ECs) and DUs deliver power to household consumers even at the height of the recent supply-deficiency situation in the Visayas.

The Visayas grid went on red alert on May 19 due to generation deficiency caused by the emergency shutdown of three power plants. A total of 200 megawatts (MW) generation capacity was lost from the grid during this period.

However, grid-connected ECs and DUs did not experience rotating brownouts and outages as the situation was addressed by NGCP’s HVDC submarine cable.

The submarine cable connecting the Luzon and the Visayas grids allowed power flow to and from the two island groups. During the recent supply deficiency in the Visayas, the submarine cable brought in excess power supply from Luzon to improve the supply situation in the Visayas.

The facility was instrumental in normalizing the Visayas grid with as much as 117 MW of power flowing from Luzon to Visayas during the evening peak of May 20.

The power flow helped the Visayas avoid rotational brownouts and manual load dropping. Interruptible Load Program was also implemented in some parts of Visayas to avoid rotational brownouts.

However, parts of Panay island still experienced power interruptions since some areas are not connected to the grid. These areas source their electricity from embedded generators. In the event these generators shut down, the distribution utility connected to them are unable to source electricity from other power plants.

NGCP is a privately owned corporation in charge of operating, maintaining, and developing the country’s power grid. It does not own or operate any power plant or generating units.

NGCP transmits high-voltage electricity through “power superhighways” that include the interconnected system of transmission lines, towers, substations and related assets. Regular maintenance activities, expansion, and upgrading projects aim to enhance the reliability and quality of electricity delivered to grid-connected customers like generators, distributors and large industries. source

Intermittent Mindanao power sources want exemption from IMEM penalties

Manila Bulletin
by Myrna Velasco
June 20, 2014

Hydro power facilities, which are considered intermittent sources of supply for Mindanao grid, had been proposed to be exempted from penalty impositions on failing to meet prescribed “dispatch tolerance” as based on rules for the Interim Mindanao Electricity Market.

The proposal was integrated in the application of the Philippine Electricity Market Corporation (IMEM) for amended price determination methodology (PDM) for the Mindanao electricity spot market. This particular petition was scheduled by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) for public hearing this July 3.

The market operator has cited the concerns of the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation (PSALM) for the Agus-Pulangui plants, as well as similarly-situated facilities, like the Sibulan Hydro of Hedcor, Inc.

PEMC emphasized that “due to their nature, intermittent generators are often unable to comply with the +/-3% dispatch tolerance and become liable for payment of RDCRA (resource dispatch compensation recovery amount) and penalties.”

The market operator thus noted that due to these circumstances, it was prompted to seek for exemption on penalty impositions for such types of power suppliers in the Mindanao market.

PEMC reiterated that “the imposition of RDCRA and penalties on intermittent generation in light of their technical inability to comply with the +/-3% dispatch tolerance may cause adverse financial effects on IMEM Resources of intermittent nature and will therefore be against the intention of IMEM to encourage the entry of supply investors in Mindanao.”

It explained that its subsequent move on supporting the penalty exemption for ‘intermittent generation’ had been anchored on a Circular issued earlier by the Department of Energy.

As laid down, the RDCRA shall “represent the payment due to an IMEM Resource, which was “instructed to run or increase its generation by the System Operator due to failure of certain IMEM Resources to provide their scheduled generation or due to increase in demand.”

Similarly, it must cover cost for resources that had been “bumped off due to over-generation of another IMEM Resource beyond its schedule.”

Beyond this plea for clearer rules on penalty imposition, PEMC’s revised PDM filing for IMEM has also been batting for better delineation of demand-side bidding parameters for the Mindanao market.

It qualified that “in the current process, the customer (in this case the distribution utility or the electric cooperative) may specify the quantity it wishes to purchase but has no input with respect to the IMEM day-ahead price.”

In the rules revision being pushed by the market operator, it was set forth that “if the customer is unwilling to be supplied at a price which is higher than it is willing to pay, the customer may curtail its consumption from the IMEM and/or withdraw energy up to its contract allocation.”

And if the customer exceeded its contract allocation, “then it shall pay the generator which produced the power at its bid price,” PEMC specified. source

5 UK energy firms to explore opportunities in Phl

By Louella D. Desiderio (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 20, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Five energy companies from the United Kingdom (UK) are in the country to explore business opportunities.

According to the UK Embassy, the delegation led by UK’s trade envoy to the Philippines George Freeman will be in the country until Wednesday (June 18).

The companies part of the delegation are Lloyds Register (energy; retail; marine and management systems); NiSoft (geothermal, gas, coal and oil); OST Energy (solar, wind, bio-energy, power plants, environmental services); Sgurr Energy (onshore and offshore wind, solar, wave and tidal, hydro) and Wind Prospect (onshore and offshore wind, solar and hydro).

The visit is intended to boost trade and investment relations between the UK and the Philippines.

Freeman is the UK Prime Minister’s first trade envoy to the Philippines.

Freeman is one of only 14 envoys appointed by British Prime Minister David Cameron to selected high-growth and developing markets.

His appointment demonstrates the UK’s strong confidence in the growth of the Philippine economy as well as its intention to deepen its economic ties with the country.

During the visit, Freeman will hold meetings with high-level government officials, local business leaders and the British business community.

He will also formally open the British Business Center run by the British Chamber of Commerce Philippines, located in the Bonifacio Global City.

The center is expected to provide high quality services to assist British firms seeking to do business in the Philippines.

The representatives of the UK energy companies, meanwhile, will meet with government officials and local key industry players who seek to forge commercial partnerships and explore opportunities in energy solutions.

Given the energy demand growing at about five percent per annum in the Philippines, UK which has world leading expertise and extensive capabilities across the energy sector, is interested in checking out opportunities here.   source

High-voltage submarine cable helps ease power lack in Visayas

By Iris Gonzales (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 20, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) said its high voltage direct current (HVPC) submarine cable linking the Luzon and Visayas islands has helped mitigate the power deficiency in the Visayas region.

NGCP said the grid-connected electric cooperatives and distribution utilities did not experience rotating brownouts and outages despite the red alert status of the Visayas grid on May 19, caused by the shutdown of three power plants.

A total of 200 megawatts (MW) generation capacity was lost from the grid during this period, the grid operator said.

NGCP said the submarine cable connecting the Luzon and Visayas grids allowed power flow to and from the two island groups, bringing in excess power supply from Luzon to improve the supply situation in the Visayas.

The facility allowed the transfer of 117 MW of power from Luzon to Visayas, addressing the power deficiency and helping the Visayas avoid rotational brownouts and manual load dropping.

However, parts of Panay Island still experienced power interruptions since some areas are not connected to the grid, NGCP president Henry Sy Jr. said.

Instead, these areas sourced their power from generators.

Sy reiterated the benefits of connecting to the transmission grid.

“Grid connection has its advantages. We can import supply from Luzon if there is supply deficiency in the Visayas. Our customers are also able to enjoy lower generation charges because grid connection makes it possible for them to get electricity from cheaper energy sources, including the wholesale electricity spot market (WESM),” he said.

“Connecting to the grid gives the customers the option to negotiate better prices from a larger pool of suppliers. In case one supplier breaks down, alternative power sources may be available from the WESM or the HVDC. We are giving customers the power of choice,” he added.

NGCP is a privately owned corporation in charge of operating, maintaining and developing the country’s power transmission network.

The company won a 25-year concession to run the country’s transmission assets after it took over the management of the national transmission network in 2008 from the government. source

Power outage to hit7 Pampanga towns

By Ric Sapnu (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 20, 2014 - 12:00am

SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga, Philippines – The National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) has advised electric cooperatives and consumers of a nine-hour power interruption in some parts of this province tomorrow.

The power outage, scheduled from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., will affect seven towns being serviced by the Pampanga II Electric Cooperative Inc. and San Fernando Electric Light and Power Co. Inc.

The affected areas are the towns of Bacolor, Sta. Rita, Sasmuan, Porac, Lubao, Guagua, and Floridablanca.

Ernest Lorenz Vidal, NGCP’s Central Luzon corporate communication and public affairs officer, said the temporary shutdown will facilitate the annual preventive maintenance of a 1.5 MVA transformer and its power equipment at the Basa substation, and the replacement of old wooden poles along the Hermosa-Guagua 69-kilovolt line.

He said normal operations will immediately resume after the work is completed. source

DOE pushes measure to hasten process of building power plants

By Iris C. Gonzales (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 20, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Energy (DOE) is pushing for a measure that would hasten the process of building power plants, Energy Secretary Carlos Jericho Petilla said.

He said the measure may be an amendment to Republic Act 9136 or the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (EPIRA) or an amendment to Republic Act 8975, which prohibits lower courts from issuing temporary restraining orders (TRO) on government infrastructure projects.

Petilla said he wants this provision to apply to power projects to improve and hasten the process of building power plants.

“We want a bill that would hasten the process of permitting (for power plants) and there will be no TRO,” he said.

“We have a law right now that says that any government project of national interest cannot be TRO’d except by the Supreme Court. The problem is we cannot invoke that for power plants because it’s only for government projects,” Petilla said.

He said the department is pushing for the measure and is already looking for a bill sponsor.

Power investors have been complaining of the tedious process in building power plants, a process that could sometimes take four years because it involves at least 160 signatures.

“We have submitted that to Congress. We are now looking for a sponsor,” Petilla said.

The DOE also submitted proposed amendments to EPIRA it had gathered from various sectors.

“We already got all the information which we turned over to Congress. It’s really up to them to push the (amendments) or not,” Petilla said.

Various groups have submitted proposals to amend the EPIRA, alleging that the law failed to stop skyrocketing electricity rates.

The National Association of Electricity Consumers for Reforms, for one, is pushing for the abolition of the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) for failure to lower power costs.

“Seven years have passed yet the operation of the market has not meet its objective of providing the consumers the power of choice. What is needed is retail outlets for prepaid electricity where prices can be competitive,” Nasecore said.

The World Bank, meanwhile, pushed for the strengthening of the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC).

“ERC in general is probably a bit too legalistic and process oriented and not driven enough (nor capable enough) by core economic aspects,” World Bank senior energy specialist Alan Townsend said in his comments to the department.

The Philippine Independent Power Producers (PIPPA), the organization of power generators, meanwhile, proposed changes in the WESM rules and manuals and modification of the must offer rules. source

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Energy investments lead ARMM pledges in first half: RBoI

Business World Online
Posted on June 19, 2014 10:44:03 PM

ZAMBOANGA CITY -- The Regional Board of Investments of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (RBoI-ARMM) has registered projects, led by energy-related ventures, from January to June 15 with total investments of P2.52 billion, an increase of 72% compared with the P1.46 billion recorded in the first semester last year.

Shamera A. Abobakar, RBoI-ARMM information officer, said the total is expected to grow to P3 billion by yearend.

“The lead investor this semester is the Lamsan Power Corp., based in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao,” she noted.

The pioneer biomass renewable energy project is worth P921 million. The power plant’s capacity is 15 megawatts, 11.5 MW of which will be sold to the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines.

Ms. Abobakar added that another project that was discussed significantly during the recent RBoI-ARMM meeting was the provisional approval of Power Up Ventures, Inc.’s importation and distribution of petroleum products and construction of oil depots in the region.

Two other ventures that were already approved are those of Green Earth Enersource Corp., a subsidiary company of Agumil Philippines, Inc.

The robust investments in ARMM are an indicator of the positive outlook of both local and foreign investors in a region previously wracked by armed conflicts and instability, Ms. Abobakar said. In March, the national government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) formally signed a peace agreement, ending their 17 years of armed struggle.

Ishak V. Mastura, chairman of RBoI-ARMM, said it is good that major investments in the region are in renewable energy projects.

“This is very timely since we are experiencing power shortage in the country, particularly on the island (Mindanao),” he said.

“The power industry is the foundation of economic growth, and there is a direct relationship between increasing energy use and strong economic growth. These investments in power plants mean ARMM can look forward to more economic activity as we are starting from a low base after decades of armed conflict,” he added.

Green Earth Enersource Corp.’s is the second biggest renewable energy project in the region, with a committed investment of P366 million for a plant with a capacity of 4.5 MW. This power plant will support the energy needs of Agumil’s milling and crushing plants in Bulutan, Maguindanao, while excess power will be sold to power transmission operator.

Ms. Abobakar said other major projects registered with RBoI this year are in oil palm, mining and trading.

“SR Languyan Mining Corp. is investing P520 million in a nickel ore project in the village of Darussalam, Languyan, Tawi-Tawi,” she said.

Mujiv S. Hataman, ARMM governor, said that more investments in the region means that the situation is stabilizing. “I can now give more attention to the island provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi. We hope that as ARMM government’s presence and activities increase in those island provinces, more private sector investments will follow.” -- Albert F. Arcilla source

Geothermal area up for auction in Q3

Business World Online
Posted on June 19, 2014 10:44:53 PM
By Claire-Ann C. Feliciano, Senior Reporter

THE ENERGY department aims to auction off a geothermal resource area in Davao del Sur next quarter, an official said yesterday.

Ariel D. Fronda, chief of the department’s geothermal energy division, said this is the department’s plan following a resource assessment that was intended to support the development of low enthalpy areas for power generation.

“There are three proposed geothermal areas for investors, but so far we have determined one that can be offered to the private sector,” Mr. Fronda said, during the Power & Electricity World Philippines 2014 in Pasay City.

He identified the area as Balut Island, which is adjacent to Sarangani Island.

“We are finalizing the terms of reference and target to conduct an open and competitive selection process for the area this third quarter of 2014,” the official said.

He added that the area -- which has surface temperature ranging between 66-700C -- has a potential capacity of 20 megawatts (MW).

The department has yet to make recommendations on the two other areas that were part of the resource assessment.

These areas are situated in Banton Island, Romblon; and Maricaban Island, Batangas.

But, Mr. Fronda noted that the Energy department will likely seek private sector participation in further drilling activity on Maricaban Island.

The department’s resource assessment of selected geothermal areas in the Philippines started in 2011. It is set to be completed this year.

The activity was intended to develop areas with lower total heat content compared to traditional geothermal fields.

These areas, according to Mr. Fronda’s presentation, would be applicable to small-scale geothermal projects for local electrical needs.

Under the activity, the department works on socio-economic profiling of specified site and reviews available data.

The Energy department has so far awarded 41 geothermal energy service contracts with total installed capacity of 1,847 MW.

As of end-January, there were two pending applications for projects with combined potential capacity of 60 MW.

The department is targeting to increase the country’s installed capacity to 3,307 MW by 2030 based on the Philippine Energy Plan 2013-2030.

The country is currently the second largest producer of geothermal energy in the world, next to the United States, which has a total capacity of 3,215 MW.

Indonesia, Mexico and Italy are also in the top five with capacities of 1,136 MW, 958 MW and 915 MW, respectively. source

AboitizPower adds Batangas plant to its EnerZone brand for P1.33 billion

Business Mirror
19 Jun 2014 Written by Lenie Lectura

ABOITIZ Power Corp. has acquired an electric distribution utility firm in Batangas for P1.33 billion. The power firm bought 8 million shares of LiMA Utilities Corp. (LUC) for P166.2083 apiece from LiMA Land Inc., which is owned by Aboitiz Land Inc.

AboitizLand is a wholly owned subsidiary of Aboitiz Equity Ventures Inc., the parent company of Aboitiz Power.

The acquisition is in line with AboitizPower’s strategy of expanding its EnerZone brand, the company said.

Subic EnerZone Corp. (SEZ) is an Aboitiz-owned electric distribution utility managing the power-distribution system of the Subic Bay Freeport Zone. LUC, meanwhile, is an electricity-distribution utility operating in LiMA Technology Center, Batangas.

The other day, AboitizPower announced it would offer retail bonds of up to P10 billion next quarter.

It tapped BPI Capital Corp. as lead arranger and underwriter.

Proceeds of the bond issuance will be used to replenish its working capital, partially fund ongoing projects and for other general corporate purposes, it added. source

AboitizPower to buy distribution utility from sister firm for P1B

June 19, 2014 8:32 pm
by Madelaine B. Miraflor

ABOITIZ Power Corp. (AboitizPower), the power unit of conglomerate Aboitiz Equity Ventures Inc. (AEV), is buying a Batangas-based distribution utility firm from its sister company for approximately P1 billion.
In a filing with the Philippine Stock Exchange on Thursday, AboitizPower disclosed that it will be buying out Lima Utilities Corp. from Lima Land Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Aboitiz Land Inc. AboitizLand is the property arm of AEV.
Lima Utilities Corp. is an electricity distribution utility operating in Lima Technology Center, Batangas.
“Acquisition of the shares in Lima Utilities Corporation is in line with Aboitiz Power Corporation’s strategy of expanding its EnerZone brand,” AboitizPower told the local bourse.
Valued at approximately P1 billion, the transaction involves the acquisition of a total of 8 million shares with a par value of P166.2 per share.
AboitizLand and AboitizPower are both wholly owned subsidiaries of listed holding conglomerate AEV.
In February, AboitizLand took over Lima Land with the acquisition of the entire stake of Marubeni Corp. in the latter.
AboitizLand acquired the remaining 360 million common shares in Lima Land from Marubeni, which brings AboitizLand’s ownership in Lima Land to 100 percent.
In October last year, AboitizLand bought out the majority stake of Lima Land from the Alcantara Group for P1.36 billion.
AboitizLand is the developer and operator of two economic zones, the Mactan Economic Zone II in Barangay Mactan, Lapu Lapu City, and the West Cebu Industrial Park in Balamban, Cebu through its subsidiary, Cebu Industrial Park Developers Inc. source

Aboitiz Power approves P10-b bond sale in Q3

Manila Standard Today
By Alena Mae S. Flores | Jun. 19, 2014 at 12:01am

Aboitiz Power Corp. approved the sale of P10 billion worth of fixed-rate retail bonds in the third quarter to finance ongoing power projects and other capital expenditures.

“At its special meeting today, the board of directors of Aboitiz Power authorized the issuance, in one or more tranches, of peso-denominated fixed-rate retail bonds up to the aggregate amount of P10 billion, inclusive of any oversubscription,” the company said in a disclosure to the stock exchange Wednesday.

Aboitiz Power said the bonds would be issued in minimum denominations of P50,000 each and in multiples of P10,000, thereafter. The company tapped BPI Capital Corp. as lead arranger and underwriter of the transaction.

“Proceeds of the bond issuance will be used to replenish working capital, partially fund ongoing projects, and for other general corporate purposes,” Aboitiz Power said.

Aboitiz Power president Erramon Aboitiz earlier said the company was looking at investing up to P80 billion in greenfield and brownfield projects across the country this year.

“This is just part of our ambitious plan to expand our power generation capacity by about 2,000 megawatts over the next five years,” Aboitiz said.

The investment would double Aboitiz’s current power generation portfolio of 2,300 MW.

Aboitiz Power’s subsidiary Therma Visayas Inc. recently signed an engineering, procurement and construction contract with Hyundai Engineering Co. Ltd and Galing Power Energy Co. Inc. for the P41-billion 300-megawatt coal-fired power plant in Cebu.

Aboitiz Power also has projects in partnership with other power players, including the planned 600-MW coal project of Redondo Peninsula Energy Inc. at Subic Bay Freeport, the 400-MW expansion of the Pagbilao coal plant in Quezon and the 300-MW Davao coal plant due for completion by the first quarter of 2015.

Aboitiz Power is also constructing more than 100 MW of hydro capacity around the country, including run-of-river hydro plants such as Tudaya (14 MW), Tamugan (12 MW) and Sita (28 MW) in Mindanao.

Aboitiz Power is also looking at diversifying its power generation portfolio to include solar power projects. source

ERC wants electricity distributors to bid out supply contracts

Manila Standard Today
By Alena Mae S. Flores | Jun. 19, 2014 at 12:01am

The Energy Regulatory Commission on Wednesday asked power distributors to hold public biddings, instead of bilateral negotiations, when securing supply contracts with power plant operators to ensure the least cost on consumers.

ERC commissioner Gloria Yap-Taruc told reporters at the sidelines of the Power and Electricity World Philippines forum some distribution utilities were not conducting public bidding for their supply requirements.

“Some of them are not actually doing it. So, one of the things we want them to do is to conduct competitive bidding for their power supply agreement. It’s still a proposed rule,” Taruc said.

Taruc said the commission would get the comments of the industry on the proposed measure.

“We are more inclined to have that one. They have to create their own terms of reference, if they need baseload plants, peaking plants,” she said.

She said the proposal was a part of the existing review on the rules regarding power supply agreements. “This is still for public consultation. We’ve given them a draft of our rules and we are asking them to comment,” Taruc said, adding the final rules were expected to be released within the year.

ERC issued the draft rules late last year “governing the execution, review and evaluation of power supply agreements entered into by distribution utilities for the supply of electricity to their captive market.” source

Aboitiz Power to issue P10-B retail bonds

By Iris C. Gonzales (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 19, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Aboitiz Power Corp., the power generation arm of the Aboitiz Group, will issue fixed retail bonds worth up to P10 billion, the company said in a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) yesterday.

The company is planning to offer the bonds in the third quarter of the year.

“The proceeds of the bonds will be used by Aboitiz Power to replenish working capital, partially fund ongoing projects and for other general corporate purposes,” Aboitiz Power said.

Aboitiz Power tapped BPI Capital Corp. as the lead arranger and underwriter of the retail bonds.

The bonds shall be issued in minimum denominations of P50,000 each and in multiples of P10,000 thereafter, the company also said.

Last month, officials said the company is targeting to double its power generation capacity in the Philippines to roughly 4,000 megawatts (MW) in the next five years and to expand its power business outside the country as it hopes to hitch a ride on the rapidly growing Asia Pacific regional economy.

The company currently has a capacity of about 2,300 MW. It hopes to expand this by about 2,000 MW over the next five years. source

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Aboitiz sets P10-billion bond issuance in Q3

Business Mirror
18 Jun 2014
Written by Lenie Lectura
ABOITIZ Power Corp. is planning to raise up to P10 billion through a retail bond offering set next quarter.
“At its special meeting on Wednesday, the Board of Directors of Aboitiz Power authorized the issuance, in one or more tranches, of peso-denominated fixed-rate retail bonds up to the aggregate amount of P10 billion, inclusive of any oversubscription,” the power firm said.
The bonds shall be issued in minimum denominations of P50,000 and in multiples of P10,000. The bonds are expected to be offered to the public in the third quarter of the year.
BPI Capital Corp. was tapped as lead arranger and underwriter.
Proceeds of the bond issuance will be used to replenish working capital, partially fund ongoing projects and for other general corporate purposes, it added.
The holding company for the Aboitiz Group’s investments in power generation, distribution, retail and power services, earlier said it will pour in as much as P80 billion in investment this year.
The amount forms part of the company’s bold move to add 2,000 megawatts (MW) to its portfolio in the next five years. At present, the company’s power-generation capacity has reached 2,300 MW.
 “Together with our partners, we are looking at investing up to P80 billion in the greenfield and brownfield projects across the country in 2014. This is just part of our more ambitious plan to expand our power-generation capacity by about 2,000 MW over the next five years,” Aboitiz Power President and CEO Erramon Aboitiz earlier said.
 The additional  capacity will be sourced from the 300-MW coal-fired power plant of AP Therma South Inc. in Davao, which is targeted to be completed next year. This power facility could be expanded by another 30 MW.
 Also, another 300 MW will be coming from the coal-fired power plant of Therma Visayas in Cebu. The capacity of this facility could be expanded by 150 MW more.
The company is also eyeing an expansion by 400 MW more of the Pagbilao coal plant in Quezon.
Aboitiz Power also recently won in the auction of the 153.1-MW Naga plant in Cebu. Further, the power firm is banking on the planned 600-MW coal-fired power plant of RP Energy in Subic. This power project is a joint venture between Aboitiz and MGen, the power-generation subsidiary of Manila Electric Co.
“We also have an assortment of other plants—hydropower, geothermal and solar,” Aboitiz added.
Aboitiz Power booked a net income of P4.2 billion for the first three months of the year, 9 percent lower compared to the same period a year ago. Core net income declined by 3 percent to P4.4 billion at end-March due to the revaluation of consolidated dollar loans and placements, which, it said, resulted in unrealized non-recurring loss of P211.1 million. source

ADB launches Asian sustainable energy hub

The Manila Times
June 18, 2014 10:00 pm
by Ritchie A. Horario Reporter

IN a move to bring investment and innovation in clean energy in Asia, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) launched the Sustainable Energy for All hub for Asia Pacific during the 9th Asia Clean Energy Forum held at the ADB headquarters in Mandaluyong City on Wednesday.
ADB Vice-President for Knowledge Management and Sustainable Development Bindu Lohani said the new hub is aimed at mobilizing investment and finding innovative ways to bring clean, modern energy to the people of Asia and the Pacific.
“Developing Asia is home to the majority of the world’s energy poor, more than 600 million without access to electricity and around 1.8 billion people still using fuels like firewood or charcoal to cook their food and heat their homes,” he said.
Lohani, however, said energy poverty can be overcome through sustainable, low-carbon energy means.
“Through this new hub we are gathering together investors, innovators, and experts to make this happen,” he added.
The hub is a partnership of the ADB, which will manage and host the facility, the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
It is one of three regional hubs under the global Sustainable Energy for All Initiative set up in 2011 by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
The hub has three objectives to be met by 2030 which include to ensure universal access to modern energy services; to double the annual global rate of improvement in energy efficiency; and to double the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.
The hub will leverage the existing structures of ADB, UNDP and UNESCAP energy programs and support to countries in conducting rapid assessments, building constructive dialogue on policy, catalyzing investments, and mobilizing bilateral and global funds for clean energy development.
During the forum, it was noted that Asia’s demand for energy is soaring as the region’s economies expand rapidly and as populations move to cities where energy use is higher.
By 2035, experts noted that developing Asia will account for 56 percent of global primary energy use, up from 34 percent in 2010.
These needs will be met by increasing the use of renewable energy and by achieving greater energy efficiency if the environment is to be safeguarded.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that Asia and the Pacific will need investments of more than $200 billion to provide full access to energy by 2030.
The 9th Asia Clean Energy Forum attracted nearly 1,000 participants, including policymakers, project developers, investors, and technical experts to discuss sustainable energy development in the region.
A high-level ministerial dialogue with energy ministers from Bhutan, Japan, Maldives, the Philippines, and Tajikistan, is addressing the three-fold energy problem of energy affordability, sustainability, and energy security.
In meetings ahead of the forum, ADB signed a memorandum of understanding with the Abu Dhabi-based International Renewable Energy Agency to share knowledge on clean and renewable energy solutions.
According to ADB, energy access, renewable energy development, and energy efficiency are priorities among its priorities.
In 2013, ADB invested $2.3 billion in clean energy and has pledged to continue investments of at least $2 billion a year. source

Alsons Consolidated planning shift to renewable energy

Business World Online
Posted on June 18, 2014 09:54:04 PM
By Claire-­Ann M. C. Feliciano, Senior Reporter

ALSONS Consolidated Resources, Inc. (ACR) said it is planning a shift to renewable energy projects over the next five years.

Joseph C. Nocos, ACR vice-president for power development, said: “Our investments are driven by what we believe is needed by the market.”

The swing to renewables marks a significant turn for the Mindanao-focused company, whose projects are mostly coal or diesel-based and are thus highly dependent on imported fuel.

Mr. Nocos, who was speaking on the sidelines of the Power & Electricity World Philippines 2014 conference in Pasay City, said ACR is developing a 210-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant in Sarangani. It also plans to undertake a 105-MW coal project in Zamboanga City.

“Over the next five years, we see that we will have to shift focus to renewable energy,” he said.

“We actually signed hydropower service contracts with the Energy department for three project sites of around 40-50 MW. We are set to sign several more hydropower service contracts for other sites,” said Mr. Nocos.

Besides hydropower development, Mr. Nocos said ACR is also exploring a possible solar power project with capacity yet to be finalized.

“We are now in discussions with solar power developers for the undertaking of a solar project also in Mindanao,” he added.

Asked if the company has plans to invest in biomass projects, Mr. Nocos cited the challenge of securing sustainable fuel sources for such plants.

“That’s the main challenge that we see. We struggle to find sources of biomass that we can consistently rely on over the long-term,” said Mr. Nocos.

“As of the moment, based on what we’ve seen, there’s very few biomass sources that we can feasibly develop into power projects.”

Last month, ACR officials said the company is looking at capacity of more than 100-MW for various hydropower projects.

To jump-start its investment in renewable energy, the company will work on a 17-MW hydro plant that will be built along the Siguil River in the municipality of Maasim in Sarangani.

According to the Energy department showed that apart from the Siguil project, ACR -- through Alsons Energy Development Corp. -- already has service contracts for a 4-MW plant in San Carlos City and 10-MW plant in Don Salvador Benedicto, both in Negros Occidental; as well as for the 12-MW Kalaong 1 plant in Maitum, Sarangani.

ACR also has pending applications for the following projects: an 11-MW plant in Bago City, Negros Occidental; an 8-MW plant in Siayan, Zamboanga del Norte; a 23-MW plant in Lupon, Davao Oriental; the 6-MW Kalaong 2 and 4-MW Kalaong 3 in Maitum, Sarangani; and the 8-MW plant in Bayugan, Agusan del Sur.

Through Western Mindanao Power Corp. and Southern Philippines Power Corp., the firm operates a 100-MW diesel plant in Zamboanga City and 55-MW diesel plant in Sarangani province, respectively.

Mapalad Power Corp., another unit, owns and operates the 103-MW Iligan diesel plant in Lanao del Norte.

ACR profit grew 2.66% to P228.88 million in the first quarter.

Revenue more than doubled to P1.18 billion, while expenses more than tripled to P861.34 million.

ACR shares shed seven centavos or 3.35% to close at P2.02 yesterday. source

Thursday, June 5, 2014

US energy giant allots $2 B for Zambales plant

By Iris C. Gonzales (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 5, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - US-based energy giant AES Corp. is pouring in $2 billion for the expansion of its coal-fired power plant in Zambales and for the development of an energy storage project in the Philippines, its top official said yesterday.

In a roundtable discussion with US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, who is in Manila for a visit, AES president and chief executive officer Andres Gluski said as a reflection of US business interest in the Philippines, AES is expanding its 600-megawatt Masinloc plant and investing in an energy storage project.

“We’re very impressed with renewed economic growth. We’d like to support the development of the Philippines. We have about $2 billion in projects. Some of them our expansion and some of them are new technologies such as for storage of energy,” Gluski told reporters during the roundtable meeting hosted by the US Embassy in Manila.

Of the $2 billion, AES will invest $1.2 billion for the expansion of the Masinloc plant by another 600 MW.

“We have projects of up to $2 billion more in the pipeline. One is a plant expansion of Masinloc. Then we have the energy storage project,” Gluski said.

The energy storage, he explained, could help support renewable energy projects in the Philippines as this would serve as “batteries” that can work on islands around the country.

“These can help provide ancillary services. Those are interesting. They’re very well adapted to the Philippines. They work very well on islands where the batteries can work. We’re the world leader in the use of these batteries,” he said.

For the Masinloc project, he said, the expansion is already in the advanced stages.

“We have the environmental permits and we’re now on the final commercial aspects,” Gluski said.

The target commissioning of the plant is in the third quarter of 2017, according to documents from the Department of Energy (DOE).

For the energy storage project, Gluski said the company may invest $300 million or $500 million, depending on the capacity.

According to documents from the DOE, AES Philippines Power Partners is planning to embark on a 40-MW battery storage project in Negros.

The project is among the list of indicative power projects for the Visayas grid, which is expected to come online by March 2015.

On top of the two projects, he said there’s room to further build its portfolio in the Philippines.

“There’s room to grow in the Philippines. We’ll look at the other opportunities. We are open but we have to make sure we have a critical mass,” Gluski said. source

PSALM to auction management contract of 8 power plants

Manila Standard Today
By Alena Mae S. Flores | Jun. 05, 2014 at 12:01am

The government is set to offer management contracts for eight power plants with a combined capacity of 1,341.27 megawatts until 2016, according to a report by the Energy Department.

The Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 status report of the Energy Department showed PSALM would appoint independent power producer administrators for eight power assets, including the 728-MW capacity of Caliraya-Botocan-Kalayaan hydro plant in Luzon, which would be privatized by 2016.

Other power plants lined up for IPPA privatization by the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. are the 44.52-MW capacity of Mt. Apo 1 geothermal plant in Mindanao and the 48-MW Mt. Apo 2 plant due for privatization in September this year.

PSALM is also set to offer for IPPA privatization the 140-MW capacity of the Casecnan multi-purpose hydropower plant this year.

PSALM, the agency mandated to manage the assets and liabilities of National Power Corp., is also reviewing the privatization of the 30.75-MW capacity of Benguet mini-hydropower plant.

The government also plans to offer the 200-MW contracted capacity of the Mindanao coal-fired power plant by 2015, 50-MW output of Southern Philippines Power Corp.’s diesel plant and the 100-MW capacity of Western Mindanao Power Corp. diesel plant.

“WMPC and SPPC contracts to expire in 2015 and 2016, respectively; privatization of said plants to be reviewed by PSALM,” the Energy Department said in the report. source

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

DOE brokering P11.585-billion ‘refund’ via reduced WESM rates

Manila Bulletin
by Myrna Velasco
June 4, 2014

The Department of Energy is brokering a ‘payment arrangement’ for the P11.585 billion worth of refund to customers that may result from the reduced Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) rates as earlier decided by the Energy Regulatory Commission.

Energy Secretary Carlos Jericho L. Petilla, who is also chairman of the board of market operator Philippine Electricity Market Corporation (PEMC), reportedly called all affected stakeholders last Monday for discussion on the amount that the power generators must settle or pay back because of the slashed WESM rates in November and December 2013 supply months.

The amount will be coming from the generation companies (GENCOs) and will be held by WESM operator PEMC and shall subsequently be lined up as refund to the customers of the distribution utilities (DUs) covered by the March 3 ERC ruling which substantially trimmed down the WESM rates.

It will primarily cover Manila Electric Company (Meralco) which had extreme exposure then to volatile WESM prices.

On Wednesday, the power generators were called again to discuss the terms of payment of the DOE-brokered settlement arrangement, but many of them are objecting to it because the earlier verdict of the industry regulator had not been based on any outcome of an investigation and had also obliterated regulatory and market processes.

Under the draft terms, it was proposed that the payment duration for diesel plants will be for 24 months – representing 50 percent of the total payable for the first year; while the remaining 50 percent for the second year.

For non-diesel plants, the recommended payment of their WESM dues as anchored on reduced WESM rates will be over 12 months.

It was further prescribed that the calculated amounts must be “payable monthly with the regular WESM bills,” commencing this June 25 billing at an interest rate based on the 91-day Treasury Bill rate plus 2.0 percent per annum.

The effectivity of the payment arrangement, as proposed, will be “in the event that a final order is rendered by the ERC” in Case No. 2014-021 MC.

The relevant parties are similarly prodded to agree “that they may refund or return such amounts which have been paid in excess within 30 days from receipt of such final Order or decision, or notice from PEMC of any excess amount.” source