Listed firm Aboitiz Power Corporation has earmarked P23 billion capital expenditures (capex) this year that shall be funneled mainly to the completion of its 1,336-megawatt Dinginin coal-fired power facility and the concretization of pipelined battery energy storage system (BESS) projects.

The first unit of the Dinginin plant in Bataan with 668MW capacity is targeted for commercial operation within this year; while the second unit of the same capacity will be due on stream around summertime of 2022.

This year is seen as a ‘recovery period’ for Aboitiz Power, with the company noting sustained pace in electricity demand acceleration even after the re-imposition of enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) last month in the NCR plus bubble.

“Last year, on the onset of the pandemic, we went on cash preservation mode. And we have significantly reduced our capex for some projects, but we continued on with GNPower Dinginin and I’m happy to report that we are progressing very well. We have synchronized unit 1 and was able to show that we can actually run at more than 600 megawatts,” Aboitiz Power President and CEO Emmanuel V. Rubio said.

Aboitiz Power President and CEO Emmanuel V. Rubio (Photo credit:

Prior to commercial operation date (COD) of the facility, he qualified that the generating facility still undergoes “fine-tuning and balancing on the units…we will be able to synchronize by this weekend all the way to June; and another further tuning, then after that, the reliability and performance runs leading to COD of Unit 1.”

The Aboitiz Power executive noted that unit 2 of the Dinginin plant was “impacted by the quarantine and the strict compliance with limited travel; and we would not be able to bring the needed capacity, in terms of our foreign technical advisers for our EPC (engineering, procurement and construction) contract.”

But he emphasized that the plant is still eyeing to reach commercial operations either March or latest will be April of next year.

Apart from the Dinginin plant, the Aboitiz firm is advancing at least 12 BESS projects that will start with an installation at its Therma Marine Inc. (TMI) power facility in Davao de Oro; and the bigger core of projects on the group’s 10-year growth strategy will be renewable energy (RE) ventures in various parts of the country.

No definitive capital outlay that had been crunched yet for the 10-year investment plan, with Rubio pointing out that “there’s still a lot of moving pieces” on the proposed installations, especially on which technology deployment will thrive viable in targeted sites.

Rubio said the company currently has aggregate 850 megawatts of RE service contracts granted by the Department of Energy – and for the targeted installations, the company has cavernous landbanking of at least 350 hectares; and that comes with an option to have additional 1,100 hectares of landbanked assets.

“Whether it’s solar, whether its wind — but mainly for the renewable energy projects that we have, a significant portion obviously will come from solar. But in the end, the main constraint with that would be land – and he who has land will win,” the company chief executive stressed.

On solar farm ventures, he similarly indicated that the company has its sights on floating solar technology deployments that will kick off with the planned 67MW facility at the company’s Magat hydro plant in Isabela province.

“We feel that we have a very valuable asset in our reservoirs – in our hydros in Magat, in Ambuklao, in Binga where we can consider putting up sizeable floating solar capacities moving forward,” Rubio asserted. 

Source: Manila Bulletin (