Ayala Group steps into promising Philippines wind energy sector
Ayala Corp did not disclose how much its Michigan Power Inc (MPI) subsidiary paid for the 50 percent effective interest in Denmak's NorthWind Power Development Corp, owner and operator of the wind farm at Bangui Bay.
The wind farm has 20 turbines and was the first commercial wind-driven power plant in Southeast Asia. It started operations in 2005 and sells output to the Ilocos Norte Electric Co-operative, fulfilling 40 percent of the co-op's total requirements.
The Ayala Group made its initial foray into the power industry in November last year, when it announced the infusion of PHP112.5 million (USD2.6 million) into MPI. The company also said that it has entered into a partnership with Diamond Generating Asia Ltd (DGA), a unit of Mitsubishi Corp, to explore solar power opportunities in the Philippines.
DGA was established in April 2009 to invest in and develop independent power producer projects in Southeast Asia and Taiwan. It currently owns stakes in other power generation projects in Thailand and Taiwan.
DGA is also developing large, coal-fired and thermal power generation projects in Vietnam and Indonesia, and plans to help develop new projects as well elsewhere in Southeast Asia where there is an expected considerable rise in demand for electricity.
Ayala also said that MPI and DGA have formed a joint-venture company, PhilNewEnergy Inc, which will undertake exploration and pre-development of possible solar projects.
The Ayala Group, in a tie-up with Metro Pacific Investment Corp and the Lopez Group, earlier participated in a bid to acquire the power component of the Angat hydroelectric power plant in Bulacan province. The consortium lost to Korea Water Resources Development Corp, a newcomer to the Philippines energy sector.
The Philippines has been attracting significant investment in its potential 70 GW in wind energy from several international players over the last few months including Hong Kong, Italy, the US and Japan amongst others.