Upbeat business sentiment, infra projects set stage for GBP expansion

Amid positive business sentiment and a robust line-up of infrastructure projects in the Visayas, Global Business Power (GBP) is eyeing several projects to expand its energy portfolio.

A leading power producer in the Visayas, GBP is looking to leverage on the upbeat business outlook and increased infrastructure demand by expanding its operations, according GBP president Rolando Bacani. “One of our key priorities is to support the country’s growth momentum, and we look to harness various opportunities as we help cater to the country’s growing energy requirements,” he said.

Visayas growth

In January, GBP subsidiary, Panay Energy Development Corporation, commenced commercial operations of its 150 MW expansion plant in response to the fast growing economic activities in Iloilo and its neighboring provinces.

Several leading developers have announced plans to ramp up commercial and residential projects in Iloilo.  Due to growing demand for office spaces, Megaworld is seeking to double its office spaces in Iloilo Business Park in the next three years. SM is also bullish on the province, aiming to add a new hotel to its leisure and commercial projects in the area.

Meanwhile, in Cebu, the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) has recently approved the construction of a P9.2-billion international container port, highlighting the province’s growing significance as a leading shipping and logistics hub in the country.

Foray into Luzon, RE

The next frontier for the company, according to GBP Executive Vice President Jaime Azurin, is Luzon. “Now that we have secured the baseload requirement of the Visayas with our facilities in Cebu and Panay, we are now looking into expanding in Luzon,” he said, adding that the company is planning to set up a 2×335 MW coal-friend power facility in the island.

Azurin said that the company also plans to venture into renewable energy (RE) to expand its portfolio. “Another key priority for us is to explore renewable energy sources as part of our commitment to offer flexible energy solutions to our customers,” he said.

Azurin highlighted that GBP’s renewable energy arm, Global Renewable Power Corporation (GRPC), has been looking into several RE projects, including bagasse and hydro, among others. “We have a couple of biomass projects in the pipeline, which will be our first foray into RE,” he added.

Expanding the company’s portfolio is crucial in order to more effectively address the needs of consumers, Azurin said. Positive business sentiment is projected to boost business expansion and increase energy demand. Data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ (BSP) quarterly Business Expectations Survey shows that business outlook for the second quarter of 2017 stood at 47.2 percent, up 12.5 percent from the previous quarter.

The industry, construction and service sectors all posted buoyant outlook for Q2, signaling anticipation for increased consumption during the summer period as well as confidence in government spending and infrastructure projects.

GBP, with a total installed capacity of 854 MW, is one of the leading independent power producers in the Visayas, with facilities located in Cebu, Iloilo, Aklan, and Mindoro. #