First Gen to expand 112-MW Philippines complex by 109 MW

The new owner of the 112-MW Pantabangan-Masiway hydroelectric complex plans to spend an estimated US$100 million to expand the two-plant project in the northern Philippines by 109 MW.

First Generation Hydropower Corp., a unit of Philippines independent power producer First Gen Corp., made the announcement December 18 at a ceremony in which First Gen took possession of the facilities from the government's Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. First Gen won a privatization auction September 8 of the two National Power Corp. (Napocor) hydropower plants with a bid of US$129 million. (HNN 9/11/06)

�We hope to present to the BOI (Board of Investments) and DOE (Department of Energy) a proposal for expansion, which we believe will merit support and some incentives,� First Gen Corp. Chief Executive Officer Peter Garrucho Jr. said.

First Gen said 100-MW Pantabangan would be increased 30 MW by an upgrade program and another 65 MW by an expansion to a total 195 MW, while 12-MW Masiway would be increased 1 MW by upgrade and another 13 MW by expansion to a total 26 MW. The grand total of capacity at the complex would be 221 MW.

The firm said the US$100 million expansion cost is based on preliminary estimates to be firmed up as details are finalized. Work is expected to begin in early 2007 and be completed by mid-2008.

First Gen Hydro has invited all Napocor employees of the plants to continue under the new owner. First Gen is to begin serving former Napocor customers in the area December 26.

First Gen also won the privatization auction of the 1.6-MW Agusan hydro project in 2004 and participated in bidding for the 360-MW Magat hydro project won by Aboitiz Equity Venture Inc. and Statkraft Norfund Power Invest of Norway December 14. (HNN 12/14/06)

For information, contact First Gen Corp., 3rd Floor Benpres Building, Exchange Road, Corner Meralco Ave., Ortigas Center, Pasig City, Philippines; (63) 2-4496400; Fax: (63) 2-6378366; E-mail: info@firstgen.com.ph; Internet: www.firstgen.com.ph.

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