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Infrastructure & PPPs in Philippines - Q4 2021 Update

PHILIPPINES has seen progress in development of multiple PPP infrastructure projects. Besides the core sectors, the country is in track to develop projects (via both unsolicited and solicited modes) in water, waste management and healthcare.

Read more about key developments in Infrastructure and PPPs in Q4 2021 in Philippines in our latest insight.

 

October 2021

CONVERGE SIGNS TWO-YEAR PPA WITH FIRST GEN GEOTHERMAL PROJECT

Manila-listed broadband operator Converge Information and Communications Technology Solutions (Converge ICTS) has signed a two-year purchase agreement with a 123 MW geothermal project set up by power major First Gen. The plant will provide up to 1.5 MW during the first year, and 2.5 MW in the second year. The energy will be used to power its headquarters in Paslig City, in the Greater Manila Area.

The electricity will be sourced from First Gen’s Tongonan geothermal power facility located in the southern Leyte Island. The country is set to launch a new round of auctions for renewable capacity. Independent power producers will participate in a reverse auction to provide electricity to the grid, supported by a feed-in-tariff.


PHILIPPINES SANGLEY AIRPORT PPP FAILS TO ATTRACT BIDDERS

The Sangley Point International Airport project, in the Philippines, has failed to attract interest from any bidder on its retender process, after a first attempt to auction the multi-billion dollar PPP was cancelled earlier in 2021.

Manila-listed conglomerate Metro Pacific Investments Corporation ,China Communications Construction Company (CCCC), Philippines Airport Ground Support Solutions and Mosveldtt Law Office purchased bidding documents in June 2021 but bid was not submitted by any player.

The Sangley Airport PPP is one of the billion-dollar airport projects proposed to reduce overcrowding at Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), the country's main gateway.


CITICORE SEEKS TO EXPAND INTO WIND AND ENERGY STORAGE

Philippines-based renewables firm Citicore Power is aiming to expand its portfolio to include hydro, wind and energy storage. The company will seek to increase its renewables capacity both through greenfield development and mergers and acquisitions. Citicore plans to augment capacity by about 110 MW next year through the construction of new solar plants on the island of Luzon.

The Manila-based renewables producer has reached financial close for a 20 MW run-of-river hydropower project located in northern Luzon island. Citicore, which currently owns 163 MW of operational solar capacity, is planning to raise PHP 10Bn (USD 197Mn) through the listing of a renewables-focused real estate investment trust (REIT). The proceeds will be used to achieve a targeted capacity of 1.5 GW.


MANILA WATER WINS USD 157MN PROJECT ON LUZON ISLAND

Manila Water has been handed a PHP 8Bn (USD 157Mn) bulk water supply project in the northern part of Luzon island. The privately-held utility company received a notice of award from Pangasinan provincial authorities, in the Ilocos Region. The project is set to deliver a total of 200 million liters per day and carries a concession of 25 years.

Manila Water will finance the project using a mix of both internal resources and external financing, adding that the financing structure is currently being concluded. The project will be developed in three phases, with the construction of each stage set to last two to three years. The company will sign the concession agreement after it ties up purchase contracts with different local utilities.


KENNON ROAD PPP TO BE LAUNCHED IN JANUARY 2022

The Philippines is set to launch the tender of a PHP 11Bn (USD 217Mn) road upgrade project in January 2022.The government is due to sign the concession agreement for the Kennon Road project in October 2022 and construction works will start in 2023. The PPP will become operational in 2025.

The project will involve the improvement of the 33km road, its widening, the upgrade of existing bridges and the building of slope protection where needed. The segment, which connects Rosario to Baguio city, is often cut off by landslides and rock-falls. The improved toll road will reduce the travel time from Manila to the city of Baguio from the current 5[RK1] hours to 3.5 hours.


November 2021

PHILIPPINES' MAYNILAD TO PRIORITISE WATER PPPS AGAIN

Maynilad, the Philippines' largest water concessionaire by number of customers, will seek new projects following the successful renegotiation of an existing contract with the government. Last year, the Philippines government launched a review of the two water supply concessions in Manila, held by Maynilad and Manila Water.

It criticized the agreements as being "onerous" for customers. The new contracts for both companies caps the yearly rate increase for users at 30% and removes a clause that excluded the government from having a say in setting tariffs. Prior to the signing of the new contract in May, Maynilad had focused its activities outside the city on less capital-intensive services such as non-revenue water reduction and hydraulic modeling.

Other than its Western Manila concession, which includes several cities in Cavite, Maynilad owns a water treatment plan in Bulacan with a total capacity of 32 million litres per day.


TRICONTI SEEKS PARTNER FOR PHILIPPINES OFFSHORE WIND FARMS

Manila-based Triconti Windkraft Group is in exclusive talks with an international company to jointly build four offshore wind farms with a total capacity of 3 GW. The projects include a 600 MW facility off the coast of Negros Occidental province and another 500 MW-600 MW off the Cagayan provincial coastline. The country's energy department awarded the projects in 2020, The concessions are for 20 years each.

The company is also seeking equity partners to construct about 500 MW of onshore wind power. The developer has nine onshore projects, including a 75 MW plant for which it announced a collaboration in July 2021 with German renewables developer WPD. The project requires an investment of PHP 5Bn (USD 100Mn).


PHILIPPINES SETS UP COMMITTEE TO REVIEW PPP LAW

The Philippines government is preparing to review a key public-private partnership (PPP) legislation in an effort to overhaul the way projects are procured. It has established a new committee to amend the Build-Operate-Transfer Law. The project will begin consultations with investors, civil society, and other stakeholders in December. It aims to publish a draft in the first quarter of 2022.

The government had said in 2019 that it would not guarantee returns to concessionaires or allow automatic increases in user rates, among other points. The new legislation will provide an implementation framework, including for unsolicited projects. The revisions will protect the public from excessive payments.

Authorities also canceled some projects while some others are awaiting final approvals. The government is not keen on unsolicited projects where the contracts are negotiated prior to the authorities calling for bidders to match the initial proposal.


December 2021

PHILIPPINES POWER DEVELOPERS PARTNER FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY PROJECTS

Philippines solar module company, Pi Energy has agreed with local firm Climargy on energy efficiency and conservation (EE&C) projects in the country for commercial and industrial customers. Pi Energy, which is backed by the Lopez family, and Climargy plan to develop a portfolio of EE&C projects which will reduce customers' power use by about 1 TWh, translating to cost savings of PHP 7.5Bn (USD 149Mn), through the year 2040.

The two companies will focus on growing their Philippines business over the next three years with a goal of building out the partnership to other Asian countries thereafter. The Philippines is expected to see a dramatic growth in demand for EE&C solutions if the Philippines government passes the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act 2019, which offers tax and other incentives to companies to introduce EE&C into their operations.


PHILIPPINES PLANS USD 510MN HEALTHCARE PPP TENDERS IN 2022

The Philippines government is looking to launch the tenders for big healthcare PPP projects in 2022. The PPP centre is preparing tenders of the new Philippine General Hospital (PGH) in Diliman district of Quezon City and a 300-bed PGH cancer center in Manila.

The two projects will have an estimated total investment of PHP 26Bn (USD 510Mn), with the PGH project in Diliman to cost about PHP 21.3bn. The University of Philippines will be the public sector partner of the projects. The Investment Coordination Committee (ICC) of the National Economic and Development Authority has been in the advanced stages of evaluating the project.

The project auctions may commence from the early quarters of 2022.

The proposed healthcare project in Quezon City will feature a 700-bed university teaching and research hospital, a medicine college, and genomic cancer research center. The private-sector partner will design, build, finance, and maintain the project under a 25-year concession, while the cancer centre will feature 200 to 300 beds with at least half of the capacity reserved for underprivileged citizens.

The PHP 4.6bn project, to be developed in the 30-year Build-to-Transfer mode, will be located in the UP-PGH Ermita site of Manila. The government is also planning to launch two more regional hospitals - PHP 330m Cagayan Valley Medical Center and PHP 470m Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center. They are under review by the ICC for approval and were designed to boost the hemodialysis facilities across the country.


AYALA PLATFORM INVESTS USD 137MN IN PHILIPPINE WIND PROJECT

Philippine power developer AC Energy Corporation (ACEN) has signed a subscription agreement for 99.96% of the total outstanding shares of Bayog Wind Power Corp. (BWPC) for PHP 7Bn (USD 137.11Mn).

BWPC will use the proceeds to fund continuing works for the construction of its 160 MW Pagudpud wind farm in Barangays Balaoi and Caunayan, Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte. The project will be wholly owned by ACEN after the board approval of the acquisition of the ownership interest of UPC Philippines Wind Investment and Stella Marie L. Sutton in BWPC.


DP WORLD INTERESTED IN DEVELOPING PHILIPPINES PORT PROJECT

Dubai-based DP World wants to develop a port project in the Philippines. The company aims to develop a port in the country and an adjacent 50 hectares to 100 hectares special economic zone. The company will visit the country early 2022 to scout for potential locations for the facility.

PEZA is tasked with developing special economic areas to attract foreign investment to the country, providing assistance and incentives to potential investors. Dubai-based conglomerate Lootah Group is interested in developing an LNG-to-power asset and a biofuel production facility in the country.

Companies have struggled to develop large infrastructure projects in the Philippines in recent years, amid a perceived mistrust from the government on the use of PPPs. The country is preparing to review key legislation on public-private partnerships in the first quarter of next year, which is set to protect the public against excessive payments.


PRIME INFRA INTERESTED IN RENEWABLES EXPANSION AFTER SOLAR ACQUISITION

Philippines infrastructure developer Prime Metroline Infrastructure Holdings (Prime Infra) - which recently completed the acquisition of a solar power farm - will consider investing in new renewables opportunities. Prime Infra is currently open to exploring greenfield projects and other methods of increasing our renewable energy portfolio. The had acquired a 50% stake and management control in Solar Philippines Tanauan Corporation for PHP 2Bn (USD 40Mn).

The project vehicle is developing two solar farms with a combined capacity of 140 MW in the provinces of Batangas and Cavite.

Prime Infra acquired the stake from local renewables developer Solar Philippines, its second transaction with the same company, following a deal to buy 50% in the 200 MW Concepcion solar park in June 2021. That deal was for PHP 1.5bn.


PHILIPPINES POWER DEVELOPERS PARTNER FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY PROJECTS

Philippines solar module company, Pi Energy has agreed with local firm Climargy on energy efficiency and conservation (EE&C) projects in the country for commercial and industrial customers. Pi Energy, which is backed by the Lopez family, and Climargy plan to develop a portfolio of EE&C projects which will reduce customers' power use by about 1 TWh, translating to cost savings of PHP 7.5Bn (USD 149Mn), through the year 2040.

The two companies will focus on growing their Philippines business over the next three years with a goal of building out the partnership to other Asian countries. The Philippines is expected to see a dramatic growth in demand for EE&C solutions if the Philippines government passes the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act 2019, which offers tax and other incentives to companies to introduce EE&C into their operations.

 

List of key transactions - Philippines Q4 2021



List of upcoming infrastructure projects - Philippines (as of Q4 2021)


Source: YOG INFRA analysis, Public Information

 

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