Go ahead for Philippine solar projects10. December 2012 | Applications & Installations, Industry & Suppliers | By: Jeremy Bowden
LG CNS of South Korea has reportedly signed a deal to build a US$180 million photovoltaic plant at Cavite near Manila on the main Island of Luzon. The company will provide the bulk of financing for the plant, which would begin construction within a year and be completed by 2014, according to a report in the Manila Bulletin.
When complete, the plant is expected to be the largest solar project in the Philippines. Its actual size has not been disclosed however, and LG has not yet responded to pv magazine’s queries.
Talks had reportedly been taking place between the Philippine government and Geomyung Solar, but it has been said that LG CNS managed to quietly win the deal. The project is expected to provide power to the Island’s main grid, with details of the supply deal still to be ironed out.
This announcement follows a deal about a week ago between SunAsia Energy of the Philippines and Germany’s Mp-tec to develop four photovoltaic projects totalling 22 MW in remote provinces, continued the Manila Standard.
The projects are part of a national plan to replace expensive diesel generators in off-grid areas, which are also vulnerable to fuel delivery problems. Isolated island geography and high solar radiation levels make solar power an ideal choice for the Philippines, although concerns have been raised over possible typhoon damage to panels.
SunAsia will finance 30% of the off-grid projects, with the remainder expected to come from the U.S. Export-Import Bank and other sources, according to Export-Import Bank news. Project completion is scheduled for 2014, and power will be sold to electric cooperatives in three target provinces of Mindoro, Palawan and Aklan, in cooperation with regional subsidiaries of state-owned National Power Corp.
SunAsia is expected to move on to develop solar capacity on other isolated Philippine islands once the initial four projects are complete, and is also a major provider of solar facilities to local firms and households. It has also partnered with Canadian Solar and Hanwha Solar in the past.
The Philippine Department of Energy has so far awarded 17 solar contracts for capacity totalling 271 MW. The latest project to be completed was also the country’s biggest rooftop installation at 571 kW in June, financed by the Asian Development Bank.
The new projects are expected to boost solar generation in the Philippines, which currently comprises less than 0.1% of total output.
Minwoo Kim from Suwan, South Korea
Tuesday, 11.12.2012 05:43
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