BANK of the Philippine Islands (BPI) is bullish on the impact of solar energy investments as it can reduce energy cost in the long run.

“Solar energy is a low-hanging fruit for most companies. If done correctly, they can save nearly 35% on electricity. This results in savings that businesses can use for more productive purposes,” said Deputy Head of BPI Sustainable Development Finance (SDF) Anna Liza A. Eugenio.

Ms. Eugenio said many businesses still view solar energy investments as more apt for doing business in advanced economies.

BPI SDF has financed 365 projects in the first half of 2021 — including P28 billion in credit to 158 energy efficiency projects, P139 billion for renewable energy, and P34 billion for 109 climate resilience developments, Ms. Eugenio said.

The program has been tapped by clients for green projects related to energy efficiency, renewable energy, climate resilience, and sustainable agriculture.

The Philippines, as a tropical country with abundance of sunny days, has potential for solar energy, said Silverio Navarro, Jr., a renewable energy consultant for BPI.

“We can take advantage of this energy from the sun to generate usable electricity that can be used to power households or businesses through clean and sustainable means,” Mr. Navarro said.

“The cost has also gone down because of the improvements in technology and the increasing competition from solar technology providers,” he added.

BPI’s net income in the third quarter rose by 3% year on year to P5.66 billion, as lower credit provisions offset the decline in interest earnings. The bank’s nine-month net earnings inched up by 1.8% to P17.5 billion.

Shares in the Ayala-led lender closed at P91.05 apiece on Monday, dropping from their finish of P92.15 on Friday. The local stock market suspended trading on Tuesday due to a technical glitch. — Luz Wendy T. Noble