Power utility giant Manila Electric Company (Meralco) will inject P50 billion worth of capital expenditures (capex) for the expansion of its distribution network as well as power generation facilities to support the country’s track into economic recovery post-pandemic.
“Today, we estimate that we need to execute close to P50 billion of capex for our distribution and generation investments,” Meralco Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan said.
He emphasized the next wave of investments of the company will be anchored on opportunities “to create jobs, propel business activities and stimulate consumption.’
Pangilinan stressed “as 2020 comes to a close, we remain to be on the lookout for ways to limit the adverse impact of this pandemic, while remaining steadfast in commitment to keeping the lights on.”
He opined “there is opportunity in every crisis,” and the company shares the belief “that we will emerge stronger than ever.”
In a related development, Meralco announced that at least nine (9) power generation companies have advanced initial interest to bid for the power supply agreements (PSAs) it is tendering for 1,800-megawatt supply portfolio to meet its requirements from 2024 onwards.
Atty Jose Ronald V. Valles, first vice president and head of regulatory at Meralco, noted the aggregate capacity from nine initial interested parties in the competitive selection process (CSP) already hovered at 3,691MW as of October 26.
The capacity offers, he said, had been of varying volumes of 150MW to 600MW; and Meralco is expecting that the prospective bidders will still increase as the due date on the submission of expression of interest (EOI) closes by November 12 this year.
He said the identities of the interested parties will be disclosed by the CSP third party bids and awards committee (TPBAC) during the pre-bid conference of the tendering process on December 17 this year.
The TPBAC has slated January 18 next year as the deadline for the prospective bidders to increase their respective capacity-offers for the PSA competition.
The submission of bids’ deadline and the opening of prequalification documents will be on January 25, 2021; while post-qualification will be on February 15.
The targeted execution of the power supply contracts with the winning parties will be on February 22, 2021; while filing of joint applications with the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) for the PSA approvals will be by March 1 next year.
In this round of CSP for Meralco, the Department of Energy (DOE) previously prescribed that its solicitation of tenders for its 1,800MW future capacity needs must be on technology agnostic sphere; and it must opt for capacity stacking instead of requiring bidders to just propose bigger capacity installations.
Based on the initial offers it cornered, the utility firm noted that proponents tendered capacities from various technologies, primarily in the genre of thermal and renewable energy (RE) resources.
On Meralco’s assessment, capacity addition in the country’s electricity requirements will still be needed by 2024 especially with forecasts that the economy’s recovery will reach high point in the next 2-3 years.