SPC gives highest bid for Panay-Bohol power plants

12 Nov 2008

SPC Power Corp. (SPC) gave the highest bid of USD5.86 million (USD5,857,553.34) for the 146.5-megawatt (MW) Panay and 22-MW Bohol diesel power plants in a public bidding held by the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation (PSALM) Wednesday, 12 November 2008. SPC's offer exceeded the reserve price set by the PSALM Board for the two power plants.

The Panay and Bohol plants were bid out as a package.

The other bidders for the plants were Therma Power-Visayas, a Philippine corporation owned by the Aboitiz Power Corporation, and Trans-Asia Oil and Energy Development Corp. of the Philippine Investment Management Inc. (PHINMA).

With the successful privatization of the Panay and Bohol plants, PSALM has breached the 70% privatization threshold for the generation plants of the National Power Corporation in Luzon and the Visayas, one of the requirements for the implementation of open access and retail competition.

Formerly known as Salcon Power Corporation, SPC was organized in 1994. It won the contract for National Power Corporation's 203.8-MW Naga Power Plant Complex under a Rehabilitation, Operation, Maintenance, and Management agreement. SPC's primary activity is rehabilitating, operating, maintaining and managing the Naga power facility located in Colon, Naga, Cebu.

Aiming to expand its involvement in power related projects in the Philippines, SPC has entered into joint ventures, has acquired equity interest, and has signed technical services agreements. Its joint venture projects are part of its strategy to increase its involvement in the power sector. SPC's technical services agreements, on the other hand, have helped the company realize its strategy of providing technical, operational, and management services to private power plant operators and electric distributors.

SPC's expansion plans are supported by Salcon Philippines, Inc. and Salcon Limited of Singapore, which is engaged in the development of water treatment plants, waste water treatment plants, palm oil mills, and liquid storage tanks.

Earlier in the day, PSALM received a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) seeking to defer the bidding for the Bohol plant upon the petition of Tagbilaran Mayor Dan Neri Lim. The TRO was issued by Judge Venancio Amila of the Regional Trial Court of Bohol.

Citing Sec. 78 of the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA) which provides that only the Supreme Court may enjoin the implementation of the provisions of the EPIRA, the PSALM Board decided to proceed with the bidding. The bidders were properly informed of the TRO.

PSALM is contemplating further legal action to preserve the integrity of the government's power privatization program.

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