By Myrna M.Velasco
Listed firm First Gen Corporation has selected Japanese firm JGC Corporation as the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor of its propounded US$1.0-billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) onshore import terminal to be sited at its Clean Energy Complex in Batangas.
In a press statement, the Lopez firm indicated that its decision on JGC concluded “an extensive EPC tendering phase which commenced in 2014.” The EPC contract cost had not been revealed by the parties as of this writing.
At the start of the EPC bid process, according to the company, “around 22 companies were invited and 18 expressed an interest to participate in the tender process and work on the project.”
JGC’s engagement into the project is also prompting slight design shift on the venture, with First Gen considering to set up floating storage regasification unit (FSRU) as an interim solution to the country’s gas supply dilemma; then the onshore terminal for the longer term.
“In the short term, we look forward to working with JGC to explore the exciting possibility of modifying First Gen’s existing jetty that would enable LNG to be brought in via an FSRU on an interim basis during the term of President Duterte,” First Gen Executive Vice President Jonathan Russell said.
He said such option “would reduce the strain on Malampaya as its reliability continues to decline up to 2024,” – and that will also subsequently reduce First Gen’s shifts to liquid fuel when there is shutdown or drop in the gas field’s production.
With the EPC contractor already named, the remaining milestone required of First Gen and its partner in the FGEN LNG Corporation project vehicle, will be financial closing and its intent to broaden joint venture (JV) deals with other partners.
To date, the FGEN LNG project is the only one that is advancing if gauged on the project implementation developments required based on the notice-to-proceed (NTP) permit issued by the Department of Energy (DOE); while some had been sluggish even at their site scouring phase.