First Gen cuts down to 35% acquisition to build LNG terminal

First Gen plants resume operations

First Gen Corp. poses a 35% stake cut in getting the liquefied natural gas (LNG) project in the works upon the approval of the local government.

The LNG terminal proposition is one of the critical means in improving the depletion risk of the Malampaya project by 2024, according to First Gen president and chief operating officer Francis Giles Puno on a briefing last Monday.

Taking the prospects of investing in LNG will be most beneficial — aside from having the resources and reserves the world has to offer, it’s an openly new market still in its development stages.

“There are many existing projects today that still don’t have markets. There are many reserves that have not been developed, tapped. It’s actually a very good time,” First Gen chairman and chief executive officer Federico Lopez said.

First Gen aims to ensure ownership of around 30%-35% equity shares if talks on building the terminal are made final.

The LNG terminal is set to be built at First Gen, noting that the company’s property in Batangas is already ensured for the construction.

“If we choose an alternative site, which we can, then we have to also start doing the same homework in terms of determining the feasibility,” he said.

The energy holding company are also in talks with the Philippine National Oil Co. (PNOC) for further investments favoring the development of the LNG terminal.

The discussions made with the state-run company are not yet final, despite the fact that the PNOC plays an “important” role in the LNG industry.

“It’s not in an advance phase where we can sign anything… but I think all our discussions have been serious not only with the PNOC, but also with others,” Puno said.

“We hope we can choose a partner in the next 12 months. What we want to do is be in a position where we can make that final investment decision at tail-end of 2018 because we also need financing,” he added.