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Govt defers bidding of Leyte, Mindanao power deals

Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp., the agency in charge of privatizing the government’s power assets, deferred the bidding of two power contracts for the management of Leyte and Mindanao geothermal plants.

PSALM said it would now bid out the Unified Leyte bulk energy contract on Sept. 2 and the 200-megawatt Mindanao coal contracts on Nov. 25.

The agency originally set the Unified Leyte bulk energy bidding on Aug. 12 and the Mindanao coal contracts on Sept. 23.

“Bidding for the UL bulk will be on Sept. 2 and Nov. 25 for the Mindanao coal,” newly-appointed PSALM president Lourdes Alzona said.

Alzona said the bidding schedule was reset, because the final bid structures had just been recently approved.

Among the investors eyeing the Unified Leyte bulk independent power producer administrator contracts are SPC Power Corp., Therma Central Visayas Inc., Trans-Asia Oil and Energy Development Corp. and Unified Leyte Geothermal Energy Inc.

Alzona earlier lauded the private sector for supporting the government’s privatization program in the power industry.

“Despite the setback due to super typhoon Yolanda almost two years ago, you have shown the importance and high prospects of this particular bid. You may seem small in number, but you are among those who have been seriously and actively pursuing our privatization program, with some of you already prevailing as winners of government’s power assets,” Alzona said to the investor groups during the pre-bid conference.

The Unified Leyte geothermal power plant complex is composed of the 125-MW Upper Mahiao, 232.5-MW Malitbog and 180-MW Mahanagdong power plants and the 51-MW optimization plants.

The power plant is covered by power purchase agreements between state-owned National Power Corp. and Lopez-led Energy Development Corp.

Unified Leyte Geothermal owned by the Lopez Group submitted a bid of P215 million for the bulk energy and emerged as the highest bidder but decided to withdraw the offer, because of the damage sustained by the plants from typhoon Yolanda in November 2013.

PSALM, meanwhile, earlier said there were 12 prospective bidders for the Mindanao coal administrator contracts.

The Mindanao coal plant in Misamis Oriental was constructed in 2006.

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