MERALCO, US Firm to sign nuclear deal


The Manila Electric Company (Meralco) is set to seal a nuclear cooperation pact with US-based firm NuScale Power Corporation with its targeted installation of a micro modular reactor (MMR) demonstration project in the country. 

In a report by the Manila Bulletin, Meralco Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Ronni L. Aperocho said this will overlap with the Asia  Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Summit, said

A separate 123 Nuclear Cooperation Agreement is also set to be signed, a major deal that the Philippines can venture into that will allow Filipino investors to acquire nuclear technologies from US firms. 

This will also pave the way for technology exchange and research and development (R&D) initiatives along with prospective, funding opportunities in the nuclear power landscape soon.

MERALCO Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan said they are optimistic about the technology being offered and they are eyeing to procure a proof of concept plan that they can install safely in the country.

He also stressed that the demonstration project is essential to establish the commercial feasibility of rolling out the technology for the country since this is a relatively new undertaking for MERALCO, particularly in manning and operating a power plant.

Pangilinan also expressed worry regarding the lack of an atomic regulatory agency that will supervise the nuclear power sector in the Philippines.

While the Congress is framing policy and regulations on the revival of nuclear power development in the country, Filipino investors have already commenced exploring their potential investment opportunities, and business models for installation of nuclear power. 

Meanwhile, the Department of Energy (DOE) has been working to ensure that all international standards and policies set by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) are adhered to before giving a go signal on the rollout of the technology in the power grid.

Nuclear power is targeted to be introduced in the Philippine energy mix in 2034.