Gov’t waiting for NatGas regulation before Malaya plant rebidding

Malaya Thermal Plant can be privatized this year – DOE

The government is waiting for the country’s natural gas policy before it could rebid the 650-megawatt (MW) Malaya Thermal Power Plant (TPP) in Rizal, an Energy Department official said.

DOE undersecretary Felix William Fuentebella said that the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) is waiting for the Philippine Natural Gas Regulation (PNGR) to include the said policy in the terms of reference for the privatization of the Malaya Plant.

“PSALM is waiting for the policy because one of the conditions for Malaya is once natural gas is available in the country, it should be converted into a gas-fired plant,” Fuentebella said.

The PNGR is a policy framework that will guide the development of natural gas industry in the country as it prepares for the depletion of the Malampaya natural gas supply in 2024.

“The PNGR will serve as the regulatory framework in the promotion of the Philippines as an LNG emerging market characterized by a liberalized/competitive environment and market-based pricing,” DOE Undersecretary Donato D. Marcos said.

Marcos added that as soon as the policy takes place, the country can begin importing LNG to safeguard the predicted drop of supply of the Malampaya in 2022 as it is seen to be terminated of its concession by 2024.

“Also, the implementation of the PNGR is hoped to pave the way in meeting the target of the Secretary to have the ground breaking for an LNG import facility by 2018,” Marcos also stressed.

Earlier, the DOE said that that the Malaya plant was planned to be converted to a coal or LNG baseload plant.