Privatization of NAPOCOR complex needs PSALM’s life extension


The proposed transformation of the National Power Corporation (NAPOCOR) complex in Diliman, Quezon City into a mixed-use commercial property will, among other things, require the extension of the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation’s (PSALM) corporate life.

Though the Department of Finance (DOF) had approved the privatization plan for the NAPOCOR complex, PSALM President Irene Garcia stressed that PSALM’s corporate lifespan extension must be prioritized.

She noted a pending bill filed by Rep. Mikey Arroyo, who chairs the House Committee on Energy.

PSALM was established in 2001 by virtue of Republic Act 9136 or the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA). Section 50 particularly states that PSALM would have a corporate life of 25 years, which means it would be dissolved by 2026, unless extended by another law.

Aside from NAPOCOR itself, the 5.195-hectare complex houses the offices of the National Transmission Company. The property’s conversion would be patterned after that of the Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City.

PSALM had chosen architectural firm WTA Design Studio to develop the site after presenting the winning conceptual design for the property. Entitled “The East Grid,” WTA aims to transform the property into a mixed-use office development that would employ efficient systems and sustainable design ideas

Back in 2019, PSALM engaged the consulting services of PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to do the feasibility study for the property’s privatization and development plan. However, adjustments had to be made to the earlier crafted plan due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The updated PwC study, Garcia pointed out, had already been submitted to the DOF, which became its basis to give the go-signal to the project. This came with the condition that PSALM’s existence must go beyond 2026.