HK-based firm to build $1B power portfolio in PH

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01:44 AM December 10th, 2012

By: Amy R. Remo, December 10th, 2012 01:44 AM

Hong Kong-based Energy World Corp. Ltd. is building an impressive power portfolio in the Philippines comprising natural gas facilities and renewable energy power plants, with investments possibly exceeding $1 billion.

Eduardo T. Rodriguez, country manager for the local unit of Energy World, said the company’s natural gas projects might consist of two liquefied natural gas (LNG) hub terminals worth roughly $150 million and a 300-megawatt combined cycle gas turbine power plant that would require as much as $300 million.

The projects, all located in the province of Quezon, will be implemented in two phases. The first phase involves the construction of a 130,000-cubic meter LNG storage tank, regasification facility, jetty and the installation of supporting infrastructure while the second phase will involve the establishment of another 130,000-cubic-meter LNG storage tank. The site of the terminal will be adjacent to the existing Pagbilao coal-fed power plant of Team Energy, which has a 230-kilovolt switchyard in place and a sheltered deep-water berthing for ocean-going vessels.

The 300-MW plant, which will be made up of two 150-MW units to be put up one after the other, is seen to become one of the “most efficient power-producing plants in Southeast Asia which, when combined with the fuel gas from the terminal, will allow highly competitively priced electricity to be generated and sold from the plant.”

According to Rodriguez, Energy World was on track to completing the first phase of its natural gas projects with the LNG hub expected to start commercial operations by 2014 and the first 150-MW plant by either 2015 or 2016. The electricity to be generated from the power facility would be sold directly to the wholesale electricity spot market (WESM), he added.

Rodriguez, the former governor of Quezon province, said the company was confident of being able to secure natural gas supply as it operates and will soon operate gas fields in Australia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

Stewart W. G. Elliot, managing director and CEO of Energy World, also hinted at plans to expand the company’s presence to Visayas and Mindanao where it also plans to put up LNG hubs on small islands.

Energy World is also looking to put up a 120- to 140-MW hydropower plant and a 200-MW wind farm in General Nakar, Quezon, according to Rodriguez.

He said the hydropower facility was expected to cost $400 million, but declined to cite estimates for the wind farm as the project was still on the drawing board and the decision to move it forward was contingent on the rise in electricity demand. But based on the general rule, at least $2.5 million would be needed to produce a megawatt from wind power. This means that for a 200-MW portfolio, Energy World may have to invest $500 million for the project.

This early, Energy World was in talks with local banks for possible project financing, Rodriguez added.

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