FIRST Gen Corp. of the Lopez Group is set to invite bidders next year for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract of its $1-billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) regasification terminal in Batangas.
First Gen president Francis Giles Puno said they have finished the feasibility study for the project and five potential contractors have also been shortlisted.
“We will start bidding out the EPC next year. We’d like to have a partner before yearend,” said Puno.
Puno earlier said First Gen is willing to share the bulk of the project with a partner or partners on condition that First Gen will keep 50 percent.
“Ideally, what you want is to have the partner or partners [in place]and we bid it out next year,” he said.
Since the capital expenditure (capex) required is huge, Puno said “it’s hard for us to fund it alone.”
Construction is also set to start next year, he said.
“We will start construction next year. The site preparation may take so long, so the site preparation activity will start next year,” he said.
He explained that the company would like to finish the site preparation even before the contractor is chosen.
“So when contractors look at the site, it is really a site. Site will be prepared and that is being designed today by our consultants,” he said.
First Gen plans to have the terminal up and running by 2021, before the Malampaya natural gas field runs dry in 2024 according to estimates.
To date, the company owns two of the three plants now running on Malampaya gas, such as the 1,000-megawatt Santa Rita and 500-MW San Lorenzo natural gas-fired power plants in Batangas City.