SMC unit mulls building power plants


Posted at Oct 13 2010 07:36 PM | Updated as of Oct 14 2010 09:18 PM

MANILA, Philippines - A unit of Philippine conglomerate San Miguel Corp. is looking at building power plants with capacity of 3,000 megawatts to help meet the country's growing electricity demand, a senior company official said on Wednesday.

Alan Ortiz, president and chief operating officer of San Miguel Global Power Holdings Corp., a wholly owned unit of San Miguel, said some of the plants would likely run on coal.

"We're still in the early stages of evaluation," Ortiz told reporters at a conference on Wednesday, saying San Miguel had not decided on the timing or financing for the project.

"We will have a clear picture by the end of the year."

San Miguel, already one of the country's biggest power players just 2 years after entering the sector, said last month San Miguel Energy Corp. (SMEC) was studying investing up to $8 billion to construct liquefied natural gas facilities and power plants in the country.

SMEC is a unit of San Miguel Global Power, the holding company for the group's energy assets.

The 120-year-old group, which has dominated the local food and drinks sector for decades, has diversified into power, mining, oil refinery, telecommunications and infrastructure.