Gokongwei plans more power, ethanol projects in Negros
BACOLOD CITY, Philippines—Tycoon John Gokongwei Jr. has announced plans to put up power and ethanol plants on Negros Island.
Gokongwei said on Thursday that the Gokongwei group would put up an ethanol plant at the Universal Robina Sugar Milling Corp. (Ursumco) compound in Manjuyod, Negros Oriental.
He said the ethanol plant would be operational by the end of the year.
The Ursumco ethanol plant will use molasses, a byproduct from the processing of sugar cane into sugar, to produce ethanol.
Meanwhile, other byproducts from the sugar mills would be used to fuel power plants.
One proposed power plant would be located at the Southern Negros Development Corp. (Sonedco) property in Kabankalan City in Negros Occidental, Gokongwei said.
The power plant will generate electricity using bagasse, a renewable biomass residue from the sugar mill, as feedstock, according to the investor presentation of United Robina Corp. (URC).
The power plant would supply Sonedco’s electricity requirement while the surplus power would be fed to the power grid in the area.
The URC company officials disclosed that the power plant would have a capacity of 40 megawatts and would cost around $60 million.
If the ventures into ethanol and power production would turn out to be economically viable and competitive, Gokongwei said the group would consider putting up more ethanol and power plants.
Gokongwei, chairman of JG Summit Holdings, was in Bacolod to receive a plaque declaring him an adopted son of Bacolod as well as a copy of an executive order that named him the honorary mayor.
JG Summit owns three other sugar mills—Cagayan Robina Sugar Milling Company in Cagayan Valley, the Passi Sugar Central in Iloilo and a sugar mill in Tolong, Negros Oriental.
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