ENFINITY Philippines, a unit of Belgium-based Enfinity Global, intends to develop up to 500 megawatts (MW) of solar power projects in the next three years.
The investment for this ambitious goal could reach “five times as much” as the $180 million (P8 billion) it has set aside for the 100-MW solar power plants that it intends to complete before the end of the year. Solar-power projects with a capacity of 500 MW could cost $900 million or about P40 billion. On late Tuesday afternoon, Enfinity announced the groundbreaking of its 100-MW solar-power facilities in the country. When completed, the 100-MW solar projects will deliver 150 gigawatt hours of electricity each year, enough to power the homes of 100,000 families in the country.
“This is only the beginning of something big,” said company CEO Gino Van Neer, referring to the company’s target of generating 100 MW this year. The company will use its own cash to finance the 100 MW solar power projects this year, added Neer.
The company has been developing solar projects in the country since 2010. To date, it has several solar-power projects under development in different stages of completion, with a total of about 250 MW.
“The first four projects are in Clark [20 MW], Concepcion in Tarlac [40 MW], Digos in Davao del Sur [40 MW] and in Cavite [3 MW]. This month all our solar projects have started construction and are seen to be completed by end-2015 or by early March 2016. The construction sites will be employing at least 1,000 workers,” said Enfinity Philippines President Dennis Ibarra, who added that all projects have secured a renewable-energy service contract from the Department of Energy.
Neer said Enfinity Global considers the Philippines as one of the core market of its solar business. “We will put more resources into the country and we will soon start to install solar projects on commercial rooftops, warehouses, manufacturing plant, malls. We aim to install this year alone over 20 MW of rooftops. We will bring cheaper electricity to more than 40 companies in the Philippines,” he said.
Enfinity provides solar installations to these companies with no upfront capital investment.
The company has also signed bilateral power purchase agreements with distribution utilities and is preparing to start construction on at least two projects totaling 20 MW in the Mindanao region.
Last year Enfinity partnered with Imperial Homes Corp. for the development of solar-powered mass-housing community composed of 1,000 homes in Santo Tomas, Batangas.