Meralco, SMC jointly seeking PSA approvals on 1,800MW power supply

Published March 26, 2021, 12:25 PM

by Myrna M. Velasco

Power utility giant Manila Electric Company (Meralco) and the two subsidiary-firms of conglomerate San Miguel Corporation (SMC) have jointly filed applications with the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) for the approval of power supply agreements (PSAs) on 1,800 megawatts of power capacity that will form part of the former’s future supply portfolio.

The PSAs were won by the SMC subsidiary firms in the competitive selection process (CSP) that was concluded by Meralco on February 19 this year – for its solicited PSAs that will supply it with the specified scale of capacity starting year 2024.

The supply deals cover the 1,200-megawatt liquefied natural gas (LNG) power project that SMC subsidiary Excellent Energy Resources Inc. (EERI) will be setting up in Ilijan, Batangas; and the 600MW expansion of its existing Masinloc Power Partners Co. Ltd. (MPPCL) coal-fired generating facility in Zambales province.

The supply of the required capacities to Meralco will be for 20 years, based on the terms of the PSAs inked by the relevant parties.

For the 1,200MW LNG facility, it was stipulated in the PSA between Meralco and EERI that the plant must achieve commercial operations date (COD) not later than November 26, 2024.

And in any case that the COD won’t be accomplished within the specified timeframe, it was stated in the PSA that power supplier EERI “for each day of unexcused daily, shall procure and cause delivery to Meralco of replacement power of up to 1,200MW (net), as may be applicable.”

For the PSA with MPPCL, it was prescribed that the delivery date shall start on May 2025; and Meralco has the option “to take available energy of up to 600MW (net), at commissioning energy charge, starting May 2024.”

In a recent briefing with reporters, SMC President Ramon S. Ang indicated that their project site in Batangas for the 1,200MW LNG facility has already been purchased – and the plant will be built close to the existing Ilijan gas-fired power facility in the area.

He added that an environmental compliance certificate (ECC) for the project has so far been secured also from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) as well as the other key permits warranted for the advancement of the facility to construction phase.

“I am sure we will be ready by 2023,” Ang stressed, when asked on the targeted completion of their greenfield gas-fired plant; and that’s at least a year earlier than the COD requirement of November 2024.

For the Masinloc plant, the company chief executive likewise noted that the expansion capacity would be available as committed to Meralco by year 2024 on commissioning phase; and by 2025 on full commercial stream. (MMV)