PSALM sells 3 real estate assets to Aboitiz, Lopez firms (By Myrna M. Velasco, Manila Bulletin)

10 Aug 2020

State-run Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation (PSALM) has successfully auctioned three of its real estate assets to subsidiaries of the Aboitiz and Lopez conglomerates. These properties are located in Agusan in Manolo Fortich Bukidnon; Maco in Davao de Oro City; and Nasipit, Agusan del Norte which fetched cumulative proceeds of P36.233 million.

For the Bukidnon property cornered by FG Bukidnon Power of the Lopez group, that comprised of three lots with a total area of 10,596 square kilometers and it secured the highest proceeds of P28.610 million. The real estate assets bagged by Therma Marine Inc., a company of the Aboitiz group, consisted of the 1,595 square meters Maco property for P3.209 million; and the 3,395 sq m Nasipit property for P4.414 million. The asset-seller firm said the Agusan property “is an area where land development can be for mixed residential and agricultural purposes,” and it is also an industrial lot “suitable for power plant operations.”

In the case of the Maco property, this straddles a coastal area with a small port, which in PSALM’s view could be “ideal for business ventures related to the fishing industry;” while the Nasipit lot is seen perfect-fit for prospective industrial developments.
PSALM President Irene Joy Garcia regarded the divestment exercise as a landmark success because the offers came in despite the blight of the lingering coronavirus pandemic. The results of the tender, the PSALM chief executive stated, shall still be “subject to post-qualification process to ensure that the winning bidders met all the financial and legal requirements as indicated in the asset sale provisions.”

She noted that once the proceeds are remitted to PSALM, these could be utilized “to pay the remaining financial obligations that we got from the National Power Corporation.”

The PSALM chief executive was referring to the power sector liabilities transferred on to its charge based on the prescriptions of the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA) following the privatization of the NPC assets.

On the prices of the real estate assets, Garcia explained that “all the bid offers were above the minimum bid prices approved by the PSALM Board of Directors.”
As the company’s policies dictate, “the basis used for the minimum bid price was the higher valuation out of the two external appraisal reports that were done on the said real estate assets.”

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