MANILA - First Philippine Holdings Corp on Monday said it is eyeing P51 billion in capital expenditures this year, bulk of which will go to its power units for the conglomerate’s clean energy push.
FPH President and COO Francis Giles Puno said 56 percent of the budget, or about P29 billion will go to the company’s power generation group. The amount will fund Energy Development Corp’s drilling and growth initiatives, and First Gen’s LNG and Aya projects.
About P18 billion or 35 percent of the capex will go to FPH’s property sector, with the balance of P4 billion allocated to the conglomerate’s construction, manufacturing and new businesses in healthcare and education.
Puno said FPH’s transition to a decarbonized future will be anchored in the next few years by its LNG initiatives.
“When complete, our LNG terminal in Batangas City will allow us to import natural gas from around the world, thus providing consumers with clean, reliable energy that will also displace power produced by dirty coal, even after our indigenous supply in Malampaya is exhausted,” Puno said.
The Lopez-led conglomerate said power demand in Luzon continues to grow as the economy reopens and quarantine restrictions are gradually relaxed.
Citing data from the Department of Energy, FPH said Luzon demand is expected to grow by 5.46 percent annually from 2022-2023, and needs additional capacity to address thin reserves.
The company noted the numerous red and yellow alerts issued by the DOE last year and this year over thin power reserves.
“We expect this to persist until new power plants come online,” Puno said.
He said First Gen is also planning to significantly expand its wind and solar portfolio over the coming years.
“The demand for wind and solar will not just come from grid operators serving electricity, households looking to cut their carbon emissions, and contestable customers operating commercial and industrial establishments.”
But Puno expects LNG to “help keep the lights on when these sources are not available.”
“We see LNG as the bridge fuel that will make wind and solar power more reliable, increasing demand and hastening widespread adoption of these platforms onto our power systems.”
FPH aims to be at the forefront of the transition to a net zero carbon economy by 2050.
Puno said that it cannot be denied that the planet’s climate is changing faster and more dangerously than previously thought.
“This is why we believe sustainability is no longer enough in a world that’s badly in need of healing and renewal. We specifically chose to use the word Regenerative in our recrafted mission, with all the responsibility that it carries,” Puno said.
“Being regenerative, however, isn’t just about renewing the environment. Above all else, it’s about healing the wounds inflicted on our communities and societies from decades of flawed economic thinking and the resulting policies that have widened inequalities making the dream of prosperity for billions of people even more out of reach.”
FPH and ABS-CBN are part of the Lopez Group of companies.
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