CEBU CITY: The Chinese government is offering $400 million (P20.35 billion) to rehabilitate the Agus-Pulangi hydropower complex in Mindanao, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said.
“I think ang China government is providing around $400 million,” Cusi told reporters on Thursday.
The Department of Energy (DoE) is still assessing the proposal, taking into consideration that the Department of Finance (DoF) handles all money-related matters.
Cusi reiterated the direction is “to rehabilitate and operate” Mindanao-based hydropower power plants before privatizing the facilities.
Last month, the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management (PSALM) Corp. revealed it was in talks regarding the restoration of the facilities to be privatized.
“We should start in 2018 since the rehabilitation process will take months. The process will take longer depending on the upgrades needed, which units will undergo rehab first, because we can’t do it all at once,” Alzona added.
In June, the Finance Department noted rehabilitating and boosting the capacity of the Agus system would require P34 billion.
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez noted the hydropower complex has been operating at 40 percent of capacity, a situation that can be remedied if the necessary repairs could be done while the facility still has sufficient output.
The Agus Power Plant Complex comprises six power plants from the mouth of Lake Lanao in Marawi City down to the Maria Cristina Falls in Iligan City.
The hydroelectric power plants that form the complex are the Agus I, Agus II, Agus IV, Agus V, Agus VI and Agus VII that are capable of producing 700 to 800 megawatts.