First Gen Corp. is investing $500 million to build hydro power projects in Mindanao, which the company plans to start next year.
“We remain bullish on developing our hydro portfolio through a number of run-of-river hydroelectric power plants. We are currently fine-tuning the detailed technical and commercial feasibility studies of our concessions and are discussing the proper contracting strategies to strengthen our confidence to execute these projects properly,” First Gen president Francis Giles Puno said.
First Gen said last year that among its hydro projects in Mindanao, it would prioritize the 23-megawatt Bubunawan hydro project in Bukidnon.
First Gen officials earlier said the Bubunawan hydro project would cost $100 million.
First Gen also has service contracts for the 30-MW Puyo hydro plant in Jabonga, Agusan del Norte which is estimated to cost $120 million and the 10-MW Cabadbaran hydro project also in Agusan del Norte costing $40 million.
Puno said hydro projects usually took a longer time to construct than other renewable energy projects.
“Over time, we believe this platform will deliver increasing revenues and profits to the company,” he said.
Puno earlier said “hydro even without FIT [feed-in tariff] is still competitive.”
“We have a good chance of getting the FIT because the allocation is big but at the same time if we could not get it, hopefully there is a second round, or if not we can sell it in the grid,” Puno said.
First Gen, controlled by the Lopez Group, is building hydro facilities in Mindanao through subsidiary First Gen Mindanao Hydro Power Corp.
First Gen is the leading clean and renewable energy company in the Philippines, with installed capacity of 3,000 MW, half of which is natural gas.
The company was incorporated in December 1998 to become the primary holding company for the power generation and energy-related businesses of the Lopez Group.