DMCI Power Corporation has allotted around Php3.5 billion to expand its generation capacity in the off-grid market, particularly in Palawan and Masbate.
The company said around Php2.7 billion will be used to construct a thermal power plant in Narra, Palawan while Php800 million will be spent to develop a hybrid diesel-solar power plant in Cataingan, Masbate.
DMCI Power’s Palawan plant will have a capacity of 15 megawatts (MW), while the Masbate plant will have a combined capacity of around 12MW, 4MW of which will come from solar energy.
The Consunji-led firm aims to begin commercial operations of the Masbate plant by the first quarter of 2022, while the Palawan facility is set to go online by second quarter of 2023.
“These investments are in response to the government’s mandate to accelerate the exploration, development, and utilization of renewable energy and indigenous fuel resources, thus decreasing our dependence on imported fuel,” said DMCI Power COO Antonino Gatdula, Jr.
The company also said the operation of the new thermal plant is also expected to lower the cost of electricity in Palawan, which will reduce the subsidy paid by all consumers.
Once operational, both plants will increase the company’s installed capacity in the missionary areas from 136.42MW to 163.72MW.
DMCI was established in 2006 to provide sufficient and reliable electricity to areas that are not connected to the main transmission grid. Its off-takers include the electric cooperatives in Masbate, Palawan and Oriental Mindoro — all of which are part of the Luzon group of islands, but not of the Luzon Grid.