SoKor firm considering review of 2017 BNPP study


Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) said that it is willing to update its 2017 pre-feasibility study on the rehabilitation of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) in 2017, while expressing keen interest to participate in the Philippine government’s goal of adding nuclear power to the country’s energy mix. 

Based on a report by The Philippine Star, KHNP senior manager for overseas nuclear business Younghwan Choi said that the firm is ready to update its previous studies should Philippine authorities request it.

While pre-feasibility studies require a lot of resources, Choi said KHNP said that they will be able to participate in the study if there is an official request from the government and a detailed project plan. 

KHNP covered the costs for the first feasibility study in partnership with the National Power Corporation in 2008. The Korean firm also financed the 2017 study, which was done together with the Department of Energy. 

Apart from the rehabilitation of the BNPP, KHNP is being eyed by the Department of Science and Technology to build small modular and other large nuclear power plants.

In a related matter, House Ways and Means Committee chairman and Albay Rep. Joey Salceda said that it’s high time for the country to move towards nuclear energy amid “thinning power reserves” as baseload coal power plants continue to experience shutdowns. 

Salceda, who said that there is no fuel cleaner than nuclear, emphasized that the issuance of Executive Order 164 or the country’s Nuclear Energy Program (NEP) puts the country on the “right path” as it will address concerns on high electricity rates and energy security for the future.

An economist, Salceda said that he doesn’t want the government to spend money for the NEP. Instead, he sees the possible collating of a fiscal incentive package under Republic Act 11534 or the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Law for nuclear power investors. Such a move, he said, will probably exceed the $1 billion threshold under the said law.