THE BOARD of Investments (BoI) gave the green light for Pilipinas Newton Energy Corp.’s plan to build P4.15 billion solar power plant in Pangasinan.

In a statement, the BoI said it approved Pilipinas Newton’s application as a renewable energy developer of solar energy sources for its San Manuel 1 Solar Power Project. This allows the company to avail of incentives under the Special Laws List (Republic Act 9513 or the Renewable Energy Act) of the Investment Priorities Plan.

Pilipinas Newton will build the solar plant on a 70-hectare property in San Manuel, Pangasinan. The company will use fixed photovoltaics modules to generate electricity with a peak capacity of up to 68.7 megawatts (MW).

The BoI noted the company will hire 27 workers when the plant begins commercial operation in June 2018. The power generated will be sold to distribution utilities or the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines, either through power supply agreements or the wholesale electricity spot market.

“The demand for power will continue to increase due to the ongoing industrialization in the country as it fuels the infrastructure expansion and the growth of the manufacturing industry. At the same time, we are already transitioning towards using more renewable energy in response to climate change as part of our National Renewable Energy Program,” Trade Undersecretary and BoI Managing Head Ceferino S. Rodolfo was quoted as saying in a statement.

Department of Energy (DoE) data showed renewable energy plants, which include geothermal, hydro, wind, biomass and solar, grabbed the biggest share of the Philippines’ total installed power capacity with 34.3% as of 2016.

The DoE has awarded 166 solar projects with a potential capacity of 4,081 MW, which includes 903 MW installed in 2016.