Infrastructure & PPPs in Thailand - H12020 Update
THAILAND TO DELAY PHUKET LIGHT RAIL TO NEXT YEAR
Thailand's government will take a final decision next year on proceeding with a THB 35bn (USD 1.1bn) Light Rail Transit PPP in Phuket. Mass Rapid Transit Authority (MRTA), the procuring agency of the project, has initial plans to tender the project in mid-2020. However, COVID-19 crisis has delayed the public hearings needed to complete the study.
The 42km line on Phuket island will connect Phuket International Airport in the north to the Chalong intersection in the south. The project has been included in a list of 92 PPPs to be developed between 2020 and 2027.
THAILAND’s MAP TA PHUT PORT TO SEEK PROJECT FINANCE POST COMPLETION OF PHASE 1
A Gulf Energy-led consortium intends to seek project finance for Map Ta Phut PPP port project only upon completion of Phase 1. The total cost of Phase 1 of THB 41bn (USD 1.3bn) will be financed by Gulf Energy consortium together with the the EPC contractor.
Phase I of the project in the town of Map Ta Phut involves dredging and land reclamation of around 160ha of land at an approximate cost of THB 12.9bn. The remaining will be spent on the construction of an LNG terminal with an annual capacity of at least 5 million tonnes by 2025. The terminal will expand to up to 10.8 million tonnes at a later stage. Gulf subsidiary Gulf MTP LNG Terminal will hold a 70% stake in the project SPV, while Thai firm PTT Tank Terminal, a unit of Thai oil and gas conglomerate PTT, will own the remaining.
Construction of the entire port is slated to be completed by 2027. The concessionaire will operate it for a period of 30 years.
LAUNCH OF FEASIBILITY STUDIES FOR TWO AIRPORTS
Bangkok-listed Airports of Thailand is set to launch feasibility studies for the development of two new airports on Phuket island and in Chiang Mai city, as per request from Thailand's transport ministry. Both Phuket and Chiang Mai, which are popular tourist destinations, already have one airport each operated by Airports of Thailand.
The cost of the second Phuket airport could be THB 70bn-THB 120bn (USD 2.2bn-USD 3.8bn), while the new Chiang Mai facility is expected to cost THB 54bn-THB 60bn, as per local media reports citing Ministry of Transport. Thailand's Ministry of Finance owns 70% of Airports of Thailand.
THAI GROUPS INITIATE 1.4 GW PROJECT FINANCING
Thailand's RATCH Group and Gulf Energy Development have approached domestic and international banks to finance the 1,400 MW Hin Kong Power project in Thailand. Gulf bought 49% of the project, located in the Hinkong sub-district, in Jan-20. RATCH owns the remainder.
Financial close on the project is expected mid-way through 2021.
The project has a 25-year offtake with Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT). The 1.4 GW combined cycle project will be comprised of two 700 MW blocks, which are scheduled to be commissioned in 2024 and 2025.
THAI HYBRID ENERGY PROJECT SEEKS DEBT FROM LOCAL BANKS
Thai renewables developer Blue Solar is in talks with local banks to finance a hybrid energy project. The project, which is estimated to cost between USD 30m and USD 40m, will include a 42 MW solar plant and a 12 MW energy storage facility. It’s location is Thailand’s central Supan Buri province, and is set to start commercial operations by Nov-21.
The Supan Burhi project is one of 17 projects that were awarded a 20-year PPA for hybrid renewable and energy storage projects in 2017. The PPA tariff for the project is USD 0.082 per KWh.
BIDS FOR THAILAND'S ORANGE LINE DUE IN SEP-20
Bids for the THB 122bn (USD 3.9bn) western section of the Bangkok MRT Orange Line will be submitted in Sep-20; and consortia must include one or more Thai firms with a combined shareholding of at least 51%.
The project will include the design and construction of the western section of the Orange Line, connecting Bang Khun Non to Thailand Cultural Center station. The concessionaire will operate and maintain the entire Orange Line for 30 years, starting from when the eastern section becomes operational in 2023.
The entire line is slated to be finished by 2026 and will serve more than 430,000 passengers per day.
THAI FIRM B.GRIMM TO RAISE DEBT FOR AIRPORT POWER PLANT
B. Grimm plans to raise debt from commercial lenders to develop a hybrid electricity plant near the U-Tapao Airport, located in Thailand's Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC). The plant will provide electricity and supply chilled water to the airport and the nearby Eastern Airport City.
The plant will include an 80 MW combined cycle cogeneration power facility that will use natural gas, a 15 MW solar power plant, and a smart energy storage system of 50 megawatt-hours.
The plant is expected to cost around USD 130mn, and company is in process to finalize a 25-year PPA agreement with the Royal Thai Navy, the owner of the U-Tapao Airport. The 15 MW solar power plant is scheduled to begin commercial operations in 2021, while the cogeneration power plant is likely to be operational in 2024.
BANGKOK'S PURPLE LINE EXTENSION TENDER TO START IN SEP-20
In Jun-20, Mass Rapid Transit Authority (MRTA) announced that bidding process for the THB 100bn (USD 3.2bn) Purple Line extension is to start in Sep-20. The extension of the Purple Line is one of the high-priority projects flagged in the government´s list of PPP projects to be developed between 2020-2027. The document detailed that the project will connect Tao Pun station with Khru Nai station, and will have a total length of 23.6km, with both underground and elevated sections.
PATTAYA MONORAIL PROJECT PREPARATION UNDRWAY
The feasibility study for a THB 10bn (USD 320m) monorail system in Thailand's Pattaya city is underway; and the government would take a decision in the next few months on whether the project will be developed as a PPP.
The government-backed Eastern Economic Corridor Office will be the procuring agency. The 9km line is situated in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), a special economic zone promoted by the government as the country's leading industrial and economic hub.
THAILAND AWARDS USD 9BN AIRPORT UPGRADE TO BBS CONSORTIUM
Thailand’s cabinet has approved the award of the THB 290bn (USD 9bn) U-tapao Airport upgrade project to the BBS Consortium consisting of Bangkok Airways, BTS Group and Sino-Thai Engineering & Construction. The project, located in Rayong Province, involves the design, build, finance, operation and maintenance of the second runway and taxiway of the airport, a cargo complex, a commercial gateway and a third passenger terminal.
Bangkok Airways holds 45% of the BBS Joint Venture, BTS Group Holdings has 35%, and Sino-Thai Engineering and Construction hold the rest. The consortium has proposed Japan’s Narita International Airport Corporation as the airport manager.
THAILAND MULLS LEASING AIRPORTS TO AIRPORTS OF THAILAND
Thailand's Ministry of Transportation (MoT) intends to transfer the operation of state-owned airports to Airports of Thailand (AoT). The preferred method includes the leasing of airports to Bangkok-listed AoT. The company would also be able to upgrade the leased airport, while the government would use the rental returns to invest in other airports of its portfolio.
MoT currently manages 24 airports in the country, which handled a total of 17 million passengers in 2019. Thailand's Ministry of Finance owns 70% of AoT.
AoT's profit plunged 52% during the first quarter of 2020 compared to a year earlier due to the COVID-19 crisis. Despite the losses, AoT has enough liquidity to weather the impact of the crisis. As of the end of Mar-20, the company held THB 66.2bn (USD 2bn) in current assets.
ADB TO FINANCE THAI WIND AND STORAGE PROJECT ALONG WITH LOCAL LENDERS
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Thai lender Kasikornbank PCL have agreed to lend to a 10 MW wind power and battery storage project being developed by BCPG Public Company subsidiary in southern part of Thailand. ADB and Kasikornbank have agreed to lend USD 7.2m each to the project and the Clean Technology Fund plans to lend a further USD 4.75m to the project.
The project will include an integrated 1.88 MWh pilot battery energy storage system to increase energy delivered to the power grid.
THAILAND ANNOUNCED USD 33BN PPP PLAN AND PIPELINE
The Thai government has approved a plan to develop 92 PPP projects with a total value of THB 1.09trn (USD 33bn), to be developed between 2020 and 2027.
The plan, notified by State Enterprise Policy Office (SEPO), includes 18 high-priority PPP projects, with a total investment value of THB 472bn which are primarily road and intracity rail projects.
New PPP projects are expected to attract both local and foreign players. Thailand's new PPP Law approved last year, opens the door to offering financial and non-financial support, including possible subsidies, to infrastructure sponsors.
The country is currently developing several macro-projects, including the THB 200bn upgrade of the U-tapao Airport and the THB 30bn expansion of the Laem Chabang Port.
THAI COMPANIES ENTER INTO COGENERATION JV
Three Thai companies, including Ratch Group, have launched a joint venture to develop a THB 2.1bn (USD 64m) cogeneration plant. Shareholding of the joint venture company, REN Korat Energy, is as below:
- RATCH - 40%
- Thai real estate company Nava Nakorn Public Company – 35%
- Energy developer PEA ENCOM – 25%
The JV intends to build the project in the Nava Nakorn Industrial Promotion Zone, in the northeastern part of the country. The 40 MW project is slated to start commercial operations in July 2023.
IFC’S FIRST GREEN LOAN IN THAILAND
International Finance Corporation (IFC) is considering making a USD 100m loan to Thailand's Kiatnakin Bank Public (KKP) to back the bank's climate finance business. The "green" loan will have a tenure of 7 years, and will be committed in two USD 50mn tranches. The entire amount will be used to fund assets that meet IFC’s climate finance criteria -- renewable energy, waste to energy, water treatment, energy efficiency and transmission, among others.
The IFC's climate advisory team is working with the bank to identify and develop a pipeline of projects and establish a green loan framework.
This will be the IFC's first green loan in Thailand and it expects to enable funding of an additional portfolio of up to USD 389m, with the proposed IFC investment. The end-borrowers can access green finance products that are not available in the market such as green building finance and Low Carbon mobility finance.
THAILAND TO CONDUCT STUDIES FOR TWO NEW PORTS
Thailand’s government plans to conduct feasibility studies for two deep sea ports
- Pak Bara port on southern coast, which is part of a project that aims to create a new logistics hub, which will link the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea
- The same project also a second deep sea port in Songkhla, on the coast of the Gulf of Thailand
The two ports could be financed using PPPs public-private partnership, according to local media reports. Total cost of the two projects is estimated as THB 17bn.
BANGKOK'S DON MUEANG AIRPORT PLANS USD 1.1BN EXPANSION PROJECT
Bangkok-listed Airports of Thailand (AoT) is planning a THB 38bn (USD 1.1bn) project to expand Don Mueang International Airport, and the master plan is now awaiting approval from the Ministry of Transport, the National Economic and Social Development Council and the country’s cabinet.
The project involves the building of a new terminal for Don Mueang, the second-largest of Bangkok's two airports. Airports of Thailand expects to receive all the necessary approvals by the end of the year or early next year, and the upgrade is slated to be completed by 2025. While AoT aims to fund the project itself, domestic banks are the preferred option for debt if more funding is needed.
GULF CONSORTIUM ONLY QUALIFIED BIDDER FOR THAI PORT PPP
A Gulf Energy-led emerged as the only qualified bidder for the development of Phase 3 of the Laem Chabang Port, in Thailand´s Chonburi province; and post negotiations, the contract for the project is set to be signed in H2-2020. The Gulf Energy consortium also includes China Harbour Engineering and Thailand’s PTT Tank Terminal.
The project involves the development of the terminal F of the Laem Chabang deep seaport, with a total berth length of 200m and a depth of 18.5m. The concessionaire will design, build, finance, operate and maintain the terminal for a period of 35 years. According to the original tender documents, the project cost is expected to be at least THB 30bn (USD 923m).
Laem Chabang Port is located in the Eastern Economic Corridor, 110km south of Bangkok, in the province of Chonburi - one of three eastern Thai provinces being promoted for economic development.
RATCH INVESTS IN THAI COGEN PLANT
Thailand's Ratch Group Public Company Ltd. has agreed to buy a 49% stake in a gas-fired co-generation project in which Denham Capital-backed Nexif Energy has a majority interest. The sponsors have reached financial close on a debt facility provided by Kasikornbank Public Company Ltd., Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and Standard Chartered Bank (Thai) Public Company Ltd.
The 92 MW plant is located at the SSP industrial estate in the Rayong province of Thailand. The Rayong project will sell power to the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) under a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) and sell excess power and steam to industrial customers in SSP industrial estate.
BANGKOK DUSIT OFFERS USD 2.6BN FOR BUMRUNGRAD HOSPITAL
Bangkok Dusit Medical Services (BDMS) launched a takeover bid for Bumrungrad Hospital Public Company, valuing it at THB 85.6bn (USD 2.6bn). BDMS' board of directors has approved entering a conditional voluntary tender offer for a 75% stake in Bumrungrad Hospital, the operator of a 580-bed medical center in Bangkok.
BDMS already owns a 24.99% interest in Bumrungrad.
The board of BDMS will look for approval from their shareholders' meeting and Thailand’s Trade Competition Commission to move ahead with the offer. BDMS is also set to negotiate a credit facility from a commercial bank to fund the acquisition.
BDMS operates 48 hospitals in Thailand and Cambodia. In 2019, the company registered a net profit of THB 15.5bn, a 69% increase from the previous year.
CONSTANT ENERGY SECURED THAI PROJECT FINANCE
Asia-focused power developer, Constant Energy secured a USD 15m senior secured loan to fund its solar, commercial and industrial pipeline from the Zurich-based Global Climate Partnership Fund (GCPF). The funds will be deployed to help Constant build its pipeline of solar projects catering to clients in Thailand and other parts of Southeast Asia.
Constant Energy launched operations in Thailand three years ago and has around 150 MW of subsidy-free projects at development stage there and in other southeast Asian markets.
THAI-AUSTRIAN JV TO BUILD USD 65M PLASTIC RECYCLING PLANT
A joint venture between Bangkok-listed PTT Global Chemical (GC) and Austrian plastic manufacturer ALPLA will develop a THB 2bn (USD 65m) plastic recycling plant in Thailand’s Rayong province. The plant will be developed and operated by ENVICCO - owned 70% by GC and 30% by ALPLA.
The plant, which is scheduled to begin commercial operations in the fourth quarter of 2021, will use plastic waste produced by other firms to produce 45,000 tons of plastic resins per year. The Rayong provincial government has already approved the environmental impact assessment for the project.
THAILAND'S TPI TO INVEST IN WASTE-TO-ENERGY PROJECTS
Thailand's TPI Polene Power is planning to invest THB 6bn (USD 192m) to develop three waste-to-energy projects in the country. The Bangkok-listed company aims to acquire a project in Ayutthaya province for THB 2bn, and bid for two others in Songkhla and Nakhon Ratchasima provinces, each valued at approximately THB 2bn.
The Ayutthaya project will process 400 tons of waste per day and is backed by a 20-year, 9.9 MW PPA with the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand. The agreement includes a THB 5.78 kWh feed-in tariff. Construction is set to start during the last quarter of the year and the plant is slated to enter commercial operations in 2023.
TPI Polene Power will also bid for two waste-to-energy plants tendered by the provincial governments of Songkhla and Nakhon Ratchasima. Each project will process 500 tones of waste per day and has 10 MW capacity.
TPI Polene, a Thai cement and petrochemical manufacturer, owns more than 70% of TPI Polene Power, and is the largest buyer of its energy output.
THAILAND NAMES WINNER OF 45 MW HYDRO-FLOATING SOLAR BID
The Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand has signed a contract with a Thai-Chinese group - comprising of B.Grimm Power and Energy China - to develop its first floating solar power plant. After a bidding process that began in Jun-19 for the 45 MW floating solar plant at Sirindhorn Dam in Ubon Ratchathani province, the B Grimm consortium was named the winner with the lowest evaluation price of THB 842.3m (USD 27.7m).
The facility, part of the Hydro-Floating Solar Hybrid Pilot Project in Sirindhorn district, will be the world’s largest hybrid hydro-floating solar power plant, according to the statement from B.Grimm. The consortium will develop the power project under an engineering, procurement, and construction contract. It is slated to begin commercial operations in Q4-2020.
The project will combine hydropower from EGAT’s dams, which can generate a limited amount in some seasons, and also solar power.
The project is in line with the Thai government's policy of supporting renewable energy and reduce dependence on fossil fuels. The EGAT has plans to initiate hydro-floating solar hybrid projects at other dams.
GULF ENERGY SUBSIDIARIES LOCK 30-YEAR POWER AND WATER AGREEMENTS
Two subsidiaries of Bangkok Smart Energy Company (BSE), jointly owned by Japanese investors and Thailand’s Gulf Energy Development, will develop a power distribution project and a district cooling system for a real estate project in downtown Bangkok. Both BSE subsidiaries have also entered into utility agreements with One Bangkok, the developer of a mixed-use real estate project in the Thai capital.
Bangkok Smart Power Company (BSP) is set to sell electricity to the project for 30 years. BSE and One Power Services, a subsidiary of One Bangkok, own a 40% and 60% stake in BSP, respectively.
Bangkok Smart DCS Company (BSD) has also agreed to provide chilled water to the area for 30 years. BSE owns 49% of BSD, while the remaining stake is held by One DCS Services, another subsidiary of One Bangkok.
One Bangkok is developing the 16.7-hectare project in downtown Bangkok, expected to comprise five office towers, three luxury residential buildings, and four retail precincts. Construction started in 2018 and is set to be completed by 2026.
Gulf Energy, Mitsui & Co and Tokyo Gas Engineering Solutions Corporation each own a 33.33% stake in BSE, an investment holding created to provide power and water services to the One Bangkok development.
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