China to put up merchant power plants in PH to help build power capacity — Cusi
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine government was able to convince China to put up merchant power plants in the country to help build power capacity, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said Thursday.
During a hearing of the Joint Congressional Power Commission at the Senate, Cusi said the Philippine government signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with China in 2017 to put up coal-powered merchant power plants in the country.
“We invited, we asked both Japan and China to invest, to help us put up a merchant plants,” Cusi said during the hearing.
“And this is part of the MOU that we have successfully signed in China for merchant plants to be put up in the Philippines. We’re looking at something like 600 to 1,200 merchant plants in the country,” he added.
Cusi explained that government was not able to secure local investors of merchant plants since it is difficult to finance and the government, which could have been a good investor, is prohibited from going into generation.
He also pointed out that during President Rodrigo Duterte’s visit to China this year, the details as to the MOU was “firmed up” and are being worked on.
However, Cusi said the merchant power plants will be put up in Visayas, more specifically in Cebu and another one in Luzon.
“If these plants are established, these will be an available supply that will be put into the electricity market and will be there upon demand,” the Energy secretary said. /muf