Semirara Mining and Power Corp. sets a P5 billion budget for plans to increase coal production up to 16 million metric tons (MT).
The coal miner giant has allocated a two-year span to achieve this expansion under its revised environmental clearance certificate (ECC).
“We’re putting in additional conveyor system, additional equipment, a longer pier and additional coal storage areas. Current infrastructure is already maxed out for 12 million MT,” said Semirara chairman and chief executive officer Isidro Consunji in a statement at the stockholders’ meeting on Monday.
However, the Department of Energy (DOE) has yet to amend its work program to allow infrastructures up to 14 million MT.
“We’re aiming 14 million MT this year. But maybe if we do 13 million MT, we should be happy because the weather is projected to be a little bit wet,” Semirara president and chief operating officer Victor Consunji said.
The coal mining firm allotted a total of P5 billion to maximize output hike — P2 billion this year and P3 billion for 2018, according to Semirara chief financial officer Junalina Tabor.
Equipment imports are a top priority of the Consunji-led company, Tabor added, with the aforementioned P5 billion expenditure is specifically delegated for mining equipment, pier and conveyor lines.
The expansion will also cover bases in Japan as a new market following China and Thailand, among others, in the list of Semirara’s exports. Coal shipments will amount up to 70-million tons by end of May.
“It was Itochi Corp. The company is owned by Tohoku Electric Power in the north west of Honshu Island. It’s for a 2 x 600-megawatt plant. It’s a trial run. If it’s successful, we will do four more (shipments),” the Semirara president said.
Consunji noted that the expansion of coal mining capacity is “in line with the government’s thrust for power stability, optimal pricing of electricity and electricity and intensified infrastructure development.”
Semirara is the country’s largest coal miner with about 70% of its operation is dedicated to local demand and 30% is for export.
Last year, Semirara achieved its highest coal production level of 11.9 million MT.