MANILA Electric Co. (Meralco) said on Tuesday that its board of directors had approved the request of a subsidiary’s unit for a P424.2-million equity funding for its solar projects under development with a combined capacity of 210-megawatt peak (MWp) and a total estimated project cost of P10.01 billion.

It told the stock exchange that the request made by MGEN Renewable Energy, Inc. (MGreen) was approved by the board on Sept. 30. MGreen is the renewable energy subsidiary of Meralco PowerGen Corp. (MGen), the power generation arm of listed electric distribution utility Meralco.

“We believe that now is the time to focus on building our green energy capacity and we intend to be a key player in the renewable energy space,” said MGen President and Chief Executive Officer Rogelio L. Singson in a statement. “We also hope to contribute to the country’s transition towards sustainable energy.”

MGreen previously announced its plan to invest in 1,000 MW of renewable energy projects over the next five to seven years.

“The company was established to serve as the platform for the strategic push to develop renewable energy projects, primarily solar, wind and run-of-river hydro,” MGen said.

Mr. Singson said the projects are in line with the company’s commitment to develop large-scale renewable energy projects that will provide reliable, environment-friendly power at competitive prices without the need for subsidy.

“MGen, through MGreen, will continue working on the realization of our project opportunities and will work in partnership with established developers to maximize our growth potential,” he said.

MGen said it is also focused on using high efficiency, low emission (HELE) technology for its baseload power plants.

Meralco’s controlling stakeholder, Beacon Electric Asset Holdings, Inc., is partly owned by PLDT Inc. Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has interest in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Victor V. Saulon