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RP Energy set to start construction of 600-MW coal plant this year

Redondo Peninsula Energy Inc., which is controlled by a unit of Manila Electric Co., expects to start the construction of a 600-megawatt coal-fired power plant in Subic, Zambales this year, an executive said.

Meralco president Oscar Reyes said RP Energy was hoping to get an approval from the Energy Regulatory Commission on the power supply agreement this month.

“We are eagerly awaiting the release of the approvals of our power supply agreements…We see the critical need for these power plants to come online to meet growing power requirements within the next three to four years,” Reyes said.

Meralco’s power generation arm, Meralco PowerGen Corp., owns a majority stake in RP Energy. Other shareholders are Therma Power Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Aboitiz Power Corp. and Taiwan Cogeneration International Corp.

The first three months of 2017 saw spikes in power generation charges because of the combined effects of thinning supply from scheduled shutdowns and forced outages of power plants and the unexpected impact of the April earthquakes on Batangas natural gas plants.

RP Energy signed the supply agreement for the first 300 MW with Meralco (225 MW) and Aboitiz Energy Solutions Inc. (75 MW) and filed it with ERC in April 2016.

The first unit is ready for construction and is targeted to be completed by the third quarter of 2020. The second 300-MW unit shall follow within 12 months, subject to the resolution of right-of-way issues.

RP Energy already filed a formal offer of evidence with ERC in March, effectively concluding the hearing process.

Reyes said said the company was following up the final approval of the PSA to enable the issuance of the notice to proceed to the engineering, procurement and construction contractors and project financing drawdown.

RP Energysigned a P31.5-billion long-term financing with three banks in January for the construction of the project.

“In the meantime, we have proceeded with all the necessary pre-construction works so that we can mobilize the EPC contractors soon after approvals are obtained,” Reyes said.

RP Energy awarded a construction contract to Azul Torre Construction Inc. and a supply contract to Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Co. Ltd. of South Korea for the circulating fluidized bed coal plant.

Topics: Redondo Peninsula Energy Inc. , RP Energy , Manila Electric Co. , 600-MW coal plant , Subic , Zambales
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