Aboitiz group bullish on Cebu power projects

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ABOITIZ Equity Ventures, Inc. (AEV) is on track to completing several power projects undertaken by its Cebu-based units this year.

In a statement issued over the weekend, the Aboitiz group said Therma Visayas, Inc. (TVI) expects the second 170-megawatt (MW) unit of its baseload plant in Toledo City to come online this May. The first unit with the same capacity was launched on April 6.

It also looks to complete the third phase of Visayan Electric Co., Inc.’s (VECO) underground distribution system (UDS) spanning 890 meters within the year. This will augment the UDS that runs from Cebu Provincial Capitol site to Fuente Osmeña as part of the first phase, and all the way to P. del Rosario Street for the second phase.

VECO launched UDS back in 2015, as part of its goal to rid Cebu City’s streets of “unsightly wires, reduce outages and operational costs caused by vegetation, and increase VECO’s overall customer reliability.”

TVI and VECO are both subsidiaries of listed firm, Aboitiz Power Corp.

“AboitizPower expects that its existing distribution utilities will continue to realize modest growth. It continuously seeks efficiency and improvements in its distribution utilities’ operations in order to maintain healthy margins,” AboitizPower Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer-Distribution Business Group Jaime Jose Y. Aboitiz said in a statement.

The company is also currently rehabilitating the 153.1-MW Naga Power Plant Complex in Naga City. Therma Power Visayas, Inc., which handles the facility, looks to rehabilitate six bunker C-fed power units in the facility by the second half of 2020.

Apart from power projects, the Aboitiz group is also expanding its banking, property, and construction units based in Cebu.

Aboitiz Land, Inc., for instance, plans to launch more projects in Cebu in addition to its five ongoing residential developments in the area. Union Bank of the Philippines, meanwhile, plans to begin offering motorcycle loans and loans for pensioners, seafarers, and overseas Filipino workers. — Arra B. Francia