Ayala slows down on Myanmar RE venture

Published May 19, 2021, 2:38 PM

by Myrna M. Velasco

Given the worsening civil strife tearing down Myanmar, Ayala-led firm AC Energy Corporation indicated that it is temporarily slowing down on its renewable energy ventures in that country.

“Regarding Myanmar, we will have to wait until the situation stabilizes before we can expand,” AC Energy President and CEO Eric T. Francia said.

Eric Francia, president and CEO of AC Energy Inc. of the Ayala group

He nevertheless qualified that despite the conflict-ridden situation of Myanmar these days, “we remain hopeful and still recognize the country’s long term potential.”

It was in October 2019 when the Ayala firm made pronouncements on the joint venture deal it cemented with Yoma Strategic Holdings Ltd., its partner for that specific offshore market.

In that investment tie-up, the two companies blueprinted up to 200 megawatts of utility-scale RE

installations that they targeted concretized and be brought to commercial fruition in that energy market.

For India, which is another overseas market of AC Energy that is battling a different ‘war’ – in this case, extreme coronavirus infections, Francia noted that their projects in that country are still within timeframes and very much on manageable state.

“Projects are still largely on track despite the pandemic. Construction completion of our first solar project is still expected within the current quarter,” he said.

The Ayala company announced last year the development of its 140-megawatt peak (MWp) Sitara solar farm project in the desert-state of Rajasthan in India, which is its tie-up venture with UPC Renewables.

For that project which was placed under corporate vehicle UPC-AC Energy Solar, the sponsor-firms invested US$68 million; and the commercial operation date (COD) of the facility had been set first quarter this 2021.

The India solar installation is underpinned by a 25-year power supply agreement (PSA), of which generated electricity will be supplied to Solar Energy Corporation of India.

Apart from India and Myanmar, AC Energy is spreading its RE investments across various Asian markets – including Australia and Vietnam; albeit bulk of investments are also cast for the Philippine market.