The operation of the 135-megawatt coal-fired power plant of Palm Concepcion Power Corporation (PCPC) has already shifted to an all-Filipino team, the company has announced.

The transfer of technical know-how to the Filipino employees of the power plant had been concretized after the project’s engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor fully turned over last month the ‘key of responsibility’ to PCPC.

It was First Northeast Electric Power Engineering Corporation (NEPC), which is affiliated with China Energy Engineering Corporation, that had been tapped for the plant’s EPC deal at its development and construction phases. NEPC also took charge in the initial five (5) years of operation of the power generating plant.

The ‘key’ of the power facility was handed over to new PCPC Plant Manager Rene Marlon Castigador, the power firm said, adding that such “symbolizes the commitment to achieve an optimum and sound performance of the power plant.”

“Despite the onset of the pandemic, PCPC operations department continuously placed and trained people who will be part of the all-Filipino O&M (operation and maintenance) team,” the company noted.

Part of the processes that their employees had to go through, according to the power firm, had been those on “immersions, technical trainings and interfacing with Chinese counterparts…to ensure their readiness for the actual operations.”

One of the unfortunate incidents at the PCPC plant site last June had been the incursion of Covid-19 infection that had stricken at least 19 of the facility’s technical workers; and that also triggered the enforcement of lockdown at the plant.

Nicandro R. Fucoy, president and CEO of PCPC, indicated “we have been through a lot, including this long-running pandemic we have to deal with alongside the daily grind of operating the plant.”

He nevertheless qualified that the manner on how the company had “adapted and evolved, and rose to the challenge, even in the face of adversity,” will always get around as a source of pride for PCPC.

The Iloilo power plant is supplying its generated electricity mainly to off-takers (capacity-buyers) in the Visayas grid – primarily for distribution utilities in Negros, Cebu, Leyte and Panay island.

PCPC is a joint venture of Palm Thermal Consolidated Holdings Corp. (PTCHC), a subsidiary of A. Brown Company Inc., and Jin Navitas Resource Inc. of businessman Jacinto Ng of the Rebisco Group. ###

Source: Manila Bulletin (