Studies on privatization of two power assets set

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    The Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) will soon start the studies involved in the privatization of the 168 megawatts (MW) Casecnan hydro plant in Nueva Ecija alongside the 39.1 MW Caliraya hydro, 736 MW Kalayaan hydro and 22 MW Botocan run-of-river hydro project collectively known as the CBK hydro complex in Laguna.

    “We’re going to start studying the two because as you know, the power plants, they have different structures. Its important to structure it well, whatever is the current scenario. We are seeking the assistance of ADB (Asian Development Bank) to look at the technicalities of that and hopefully by next year, we will be able to decide on the privatization structure,” Irene Joy Garcia, the state-run firm’s president and chief executive officer, told reporters.

    However, she noted that CBK will be the first to be privatized since Casecnan is still having ownership issues.

    PSALM added that the extent of the study ADB will conduct is still being finalized including its timeline as well as the scope of coverage if it will include everything that will be needed for the privatization, including a minimum bid price.

    “I’m not very certain how much time they need, but I’m thinking it will take about six months before they come up with the study. Once there is a list of recommendations, we will plot that into the privatization’s usual structure,” Garcia further explained.

    Meanwhile, the state-run firm said that it is already doing post qualification activities for the studies involved in the privatization of National Power Corp.’s (NPC) compound in Quezon City after receiving bids.

    “PWC (PricewaterhouseCoopers), they were the ones who submitted the most responsive bid, but of course subject to post qualification. At the moment, we’re doing post qualification activities and if everything is okay, hopefully by December 13 thereabouts, we’ll be able to proceed a NTP (notice to proceed) to PWC and after that, they can start the process,” the PSALM chief shared.

    She mentioned that the study will take about 120 days with a cost of P5.98 million.

    PSALM is mandated to privatize power related assets owned by the government. However, its corporate life is only until 2026.

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