First Gen pursuing $1-B LNG terminal project

Danessa Rivera - The Philippine Star
First Gen pursuing $1-B LNG terminal project
FIRST GEN INAUGURATES GAS POWER PLANTS: Lopez-owned First Gen Corp. held inaugural ceremonies last week for its 414-megawatt San Gabriel combined-cycle and 97-MW Avion open cycle natural gas-fired power plants in Santa Rita, Batangas. Department of Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi (fourth from left) pose for a photo after the ceremonial switch-on of both facilities. Also in photo are (from left) Federico Lopez, chairman and CEO, First Gen and parent firm First Philippine Holdings Corp.; Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian, chairman of the Senate energy committee; Oscar Lopez, chairman emeritus of Lopez Group; former senator Sergio Osmena III; and Francis Giles Puno, First Gen president and COO.

BATANGAS CITY, Philippines – As its two new gas-fired power plants start commercial operations, First Gen Corp. sees 2017 as a busy year to aggressively pursue its $1-billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal that will support the company’s planned power projects and the country’s natural gas requirements moving forward.

The company will expand its natural gas platform beyond generation through the construction of the $1-billion LNG terminal within its clean energy complex, First Gen president and COO Francis Giles Puno said during the inaugural ceremonies for the 414-megawatt (MW) San Gabriel combined-cycle and 97-MW Avion open cycle natural gas-fired power plants here.

“2017 is looking to be another extremely busy year for First Gen,” he said.

Among the key processes the company will be undertaking include the selection of partners by mid-2017, the tendering of construction contract and the closing of creditors by end of the same year.

“We’ve been meeting with potential partners… but we have not selected yet,” Puno said, noting the company is in talks with five foreign companies for the project.

With the expectation that the Malampaya deepwater gas-to-power project will end its contract by 2024, First Gen’s planned 1-billion LNG terminal will be critical in expanding its natural gas plant hub and in meeting future requirements.

The company is planning to build two more gas-fired power plants within its Batangas complex, namely the 414-MW Sta. Maria plant and 414-MW St. Joseph plant, expected to cost between $900 million and $1 billion in total.

“Right now, we are focusing on permanent source of gas because the Malampaya gas contract will end by 2024,” Puno said.

The company will initially work on the Sta. Maria project, which will depend on whether the Malampaya project has enough supply to power the plant.

“Unless there’s assurance from Malampaya that there’s enough to power Sta. Maria, that’s one option [in building it]. But if that’s not the case, we really have to build LNG terminal already. The LNG terminal will take about four years to construct,” Puno said.

The Sta. Maria plant can add 414 MW of supply to Luzon in less than three years of construction.


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