By Danessa Rivera (The Philippine Star) | Updated May 20, 2016 - 12:00am
MANILA, Philippines - Alsons Power Group plans to ramp up its solar power capacity to 150 megawatts (MW) in Mindanao, starting with at least 10-20 MW in the next two years as part of its thrust in the renewable energy (RE) sector.
Pursuing solar projects will be on an “opportunistic” approach as it starts to venture in that technology, Alsons vice president for business development Joseph Nocos said on the sidelines of the Power & Electricity World Philippines 2016 yesterday.
“For solar, on an opportunistic scale, we have the capacity right now, given the extent of our landholdings that are shovel-ready, we have a potential of 150 MW,” he said.
However, Nocos said the company will not build solar projects simultaneously given the imminent oversupply situation in the region.
“We’re not going to do all of that because our strategy is to expand our capacity according to what the market needs. It’s a calibrated approach in our RE expansion,” he said.
“We’ll probably start with 10-20 MW in Mindanao in the next two years,” the company official said.
Since solar is not yet the company’s expertise, Alsons will be looking for a partner to develop these prospective projects, Nocos said.
“We are in discussions with a major RE player, a global RE player. I cannot [give a] name… but the choices are between Japanese or European player,” he said.
Earlier, Alsons Power said it will be spending $650 million for hydropower and solar projects in the next five years.
The company is a major power player in Mindanao, with several coal and diesel-fired power plants.
Its first 105-MW coal-fired power plant in Sarangani Energy Corp. (ERC) has started commercial operations in the first quarter while the second unit is scheduled to operate in November 2018.
It is also developing another 105-MW coal plant under San Ramon Power Inc. which will be completed by the second half of 2019.