ENEX eyeing Meralco CSP for Batangas gas plant

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ENEX Energy Corp., via its investee firm Batangas Clean Energy (BCE), is interested in taking part in the competitive selection process (CSP) of power distributor Manila Electric Co. (MERALCO), for its combined cycle gas turbine project in Batangas.

In a report by The Philippine Star, BCE is making progress in the construction of the 1,100-megawatt Batangas combined cycle power plant, and is currently awaiting the CSP to obtain a customer offtake contract, ENEX chairman Eric Francia said.

BCE’s 1,100-megawatt combined cycle power plant is designed to utilize natural gas and/or green hydrogen as fuel, which will supply stable power to the grid to meet the increasing energy demand in the country.

He stated that they are also working on securing a long-term fuel supply for the power plant.

Francia said that they prefer an environment that provides a “level playing field and transparency” thus, they are supportive and happy to participate in open and competitive CSPs.

ENEX is predominantly owned by ACEN Corp., a publicly listed energy platform under the Ayala group, and Gen X Energy L.P of Blackstone Inc.  

In relation, ACEN Corp., in a Business Mirror report, announced that it will not finance the Batangas gas-fired power plant as the power firm aims to fully transition its generation portfolio to renewable energy by 2025. 

Regardless, ACEN expressed their desire for ENEX’s project to be successful. Francia said that ENEX would have to source for the capital once it reaches its financial close. 

Francia pointed out that since the Philippines still heavily relies on imported energy sources like coal and oil, the establishment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals will enable the country to import natural gas in the near future. 

He added that this will allow for the development of low-carbon power generation through gas-fired power plants, which he sees as an ideal transition technology to provide reliable power, as well as, complement intermittent renewable energy sources.

The ENEX gas plant is being constructed in a 24-hectare onshore, and 15-hectare foreshore area in Barangays Libjo and Malitam in Batangas City. The gas plant has an estimated cost of Php 60 billion.