DA, DOE tap Fil-French to build solar plant in North Cotabato | Inquirer Business

DA, DOE tap Fil-French to build solar plant in North Cotabato

By: - Reporter / @kocampoINQ
/ 05:13 AM January 16, 2018

Two government agencies have tied up with a Filipino-French company to build a solar-powered plant in North Cotabato that will address the province’s electricity problem and provide livelihood for local farmers and fisherfolk.

Officials of the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Department of Energy (DOE) met last week with Paris Manila Technology Corporation (Pamatec) to discuss the construction of a solar-powered plant in the province set to be implemented by the second quarter of the year.

“Our target is to build a facility with a solar farm that can house greenhouses underneath that can be used to produce tomatoes for the sardines industry,” Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said in an interview with the Inquirer. Piñol is a former governor of North Cotabato.


“We’ve been importing tomato paste, millions of metric tons of it, from China. Why don’t we just produce it here? It will generate income and livelihood. So when sardines are canned, the local industry can source their tomatoes from these farms,” he added.


If successful, the agencies will look at implementing the same project in other provinces such as Zamboanga, Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi—islands that have insufficient power supply.

Funding for the project would come from the government-owned and controlled corporation Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC) under DOE, which is said to have an investment fund of P8 billion.

“The fund is readily available under our COB (corporate operating budget). For this week, we are going to identify the land where we will construct [our] first solar-powered plant. After that, we will be conducting the feasibility study,” PNOC vice president for operations Pedro Lite said in a phone interview.

“To generate profit, we will work as an independent power supplier for cooperatives in the area,” he added.

Pamatec, for its part, will provide the technology needed to construct the farm.

Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Director Ed Gongona, who was also present during the meeting, added that aside from planting high-value crops, the plant will also house a fish farm for aquaculture.


Gongona said the agency would be breeding black carp, milkfish, shrimp and shellfish as a means to provide additional income for fisherfolk.

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TAGS: Business, solar plant

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