Pagbilao Energy Corp. is set to start the full commercial operations of the $1-billion Pagbilao 3 coal-fired power plant in Quezon province in February, which will add 420 megawatts to the Luzon grid.
Aboitiz Power Corp. president and chief operating officer Antonio Moraza said the new power plant was “now still testing.”
The power plant, which is expected to help secure power supply during the dry months, reached its maximum 420-MW capacity during testing and commissioning in November.
“[Full commercial operations would be] sometime in February, I believe,” Moraza said.
Pagbilao Energy is a joint venture of TPEC Holdings Corp. and Therma Power Inc., wholly-owned subsidiaries of TeaM Energy Corp. and Aboitiz Power Corp., respectively.
TeaM Energy, the joint venture of Tokyo Electric Power Co. and Marubeni Corp., currently operates the existing 735-MW Pagbilao coal plant.
“We are pretty much on time and budget and so far construction is ongoing. Construction is progressing well,” Moraza said earlier.
Pagbilao Energy announced in 2015 that the joint venture partners would invest close to $1 billion to put up the coal project. Construction of the project started in the same year.
The new plant was built as a merchant plant, or one without contracts as Aboitiz Power was confident of the “regime of open access.”
Aboitiz Power chief executive Erramon Aboitiz earlier said the Pagbilao expansion was “a manifestation that the private sector is willing to take risks if they anticipate an environment of consistent policies, open competition and level playing field for all.”
Pagbilao Energy tapped Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Ltd. and Daelim Industrial Co. Ltd. as engineering, construction and procurement contractors for the project.
Pagbilao Energy financed the construction of the project via debt financing amounting to P33.3 billion, secured by the company through joint arrangers composed of BDO Capital and Investment Corp., BPI Capital Corp. and First Metro Investment Corp.
SB Capital investment Corp. served as co-lead arranger for the project. PNB Capital and Investment Corp. and China Banking Corp. were co-arrangers. PNB Savings Bank also participated as a lender to the project.