Liquefied natural gas may be introduced into the Philippine market as early as the third quarter of 2022 as First Gen Corp. and its partners have secured from the Department of Energy a permit to build an LNG terminal in Batangas.
First Gen said in a statement its subsidiary FGEN LNG Corp. received on Friday a permit to construct, expand, rehabilitate and modify a project that they have been preparing at the First Gen Clean Energy Complex in Batangas City.
The permit dated Sept. 23 was issued almost nine months since FGEN LNG applied for it last March 4.
The project entails modification of an existing jetty as well as the construction of an onshore gas receiving facility, which the Lopez-led firm is developing with Tokyo Gas Corp.
Jonathan C. Russell, executive vice president and chief commercial officer of First Gen, said that once FGEN LNG’s preparations are complete, construction could begin by the end of October or early in the fourth quarter this year.
Such preparations include the design and implementation of enhanced work and safety protocols and procedures required to minimize the impact of COVID-19 on construction personnel and the local community.
Also, FGEN LNG is preparing to send out calls to tender for a floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) upon completion of its ongoing nonbinding process.
Last July, company officials said First Gen had earmarked capital expenditures of $60 million this year and $110 million in 2021 for the FSRU, which was a temporary floating gas facility.
“The [FSRU)] will allow FGEN LNG to accelerate its ability to introduce LNG to the Philippines as early as (the third quarter of 2022) …,” Russel said.
First Gen expects its project to play a critical role in ensuring the energy security in the Philippines, especially in the Luzon grid.