MANILA, Philippines - State-run Korea Water Resources Corp. submitted the highest bid of $440.88 million, besting five other firms, at a state auction for a 218-megawatt Philippine hydropower plant on Wednesday, officials said.
The Angat power plant in Bulacan, north of the capital, is among the assets Manila is privatizing as part of a wider reform aimed at cutting the heavy debt of state electricity producer National Power Corp.
It was the first time unlisted Korea Water made a bid for a Philippine power asset and the company is most likely to be awarded the contract pending further review of its bid documents, said Maria Luz Caminero, acting president at Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM).
"What we have is a very good price," Caminero told reporters after the auction, referring to the Korean firm's offer.
Korea Water expects to fund the acquisition from internal funds and financing from the Korea Export Import Bank, said Byung Dal Kim, director at the company.
The Korean firm's offer topped bids from five other firms: a consortium led by First Gen Corp. at $365 million, San Miguel Corp. at $312.50 million, SN Aboitiz Power at $256 million, Trans-Asia Oil and Energy Development Corp. at $237 million, and DMCI Power Corp. at $188.89 million.
Established in 1967 and headquartered in Daejon, South Korea, Korea Water's interests include water treatment and supply and hydropower generation, according to its website. (https://english.kwater.or.kr/)
The Angat facility's total capacity is 246 MW but only 218 MW was sold on Wednesday.
With the sale of Angat, the government has now privatised around 90 percent of its power generation assets, said PSALM spokesman Conrad Tolentino.