Marubeni eyes 2 coal plants

Published by rudy Date posted on March 30, 2009

Marubeni Corp. of Japan will bid for the contracts to operate the 700-megawatt Pagbilao and 1,000-MW Sual coal power plants, an industry source said over the weekend.

The source said Marubeni would bid for the contracts independent of Tokyo Electric Power Corp., its partner in TeaM Energy Corp., which currently operates the two coal-fired plants.

“Tepco did not offer a bid because they are not very familiar with the Philippines unlike Marubeni, which has been a long- term investor in the Philippines,” the source said.

Tepco and Marubeni acquired the assets of Mirant Corp. in the Philippines in 2007, which included the Pagbilao and Sual plants in Quezon and Pangasinan provinces, respectively.

Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. will bid out the so-called independent power plant contracts of Pagbilao and Sual on May 27 from the original date of Feb. 20 to give interested parties more time to clarify issues with PSALM.

“There are quite a lot of documents and clearances that had to be addressed and secured. We want to make sure that this is the first bid that’s going to be successful,” PSALM president Jose Ibazeta said last week.

Ibazeta said at least four companies were interested in the Sual and Pagbilao IPP contracts but he did not name Marubeni.

“The Sual and Pagbilao bidding is all ready and there are about three or four investors who have expressed interest,” he said.

He said TeaM Energy did not submit a formal bid.

“They [TeaM Energy] did not for whatever reason. Though, I’ve not seen the TeaM Energy name, I’m not sure if they might be behind somebody else. That’s their prerogative. There are about eight or nine IPPs, perhaps some people are waiting for the better item to put in their portfolio,” Ibazeta said.

Marubeni has investments in 27 power generators in 20 different countries in Europe and the Middle East. It also has investments in the United States, Australia and other Asian countries.

Marubeni is a major general trading house in Japan. It has been in business in the Philippines for almost a hundred years, with investments in power, telecommunications, construction, industrial parks, food processing and general merchandise.

Marubeni has also signed an agreement with Lopez-controlled First Gen Corp. to “seriously consider” investing up to 40 percent in Red Vulcan Holdings Corp., which is majority owned of the Energy Development Corp.–Alena Mae S. Flores, Manila Standard Today

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