The Philippine government, in an attempt to adjust to the new post Coronavirus investment paradigm, announced that it plans to modify the existing legislation regarding renewable energy (RE) projects. At the moment, the government allows a 60:40 equity arrangement, where Filipinos must own a 60% stake in the RE project and only 40% is granted to foreign investor-partners. The government is planning a policy re-casting that will allow full 100 % foreign ownership.
The existing cap on foreign ownership is seen as a limiting factor for foreign capital investment in the sector. The Department of Energy (DOE) mentioned that it will push for allowing full entry of foreign investors in the RE sector and as such make the RE sector more attractive to foreign investors in the hope of significantly increasing the foreign investments in the sector.
The DOE emphasized that while the main focus is on geothermal, the policy modification will also cover RE technologies such hydro, solar, wind, biomass, waste-to-energy, and ocean thermal conversion (OTEC) technologies.
The policy revision will be either executed via a Circular that will be issued by the DOE or through legislation given the Constitutionality issues being raised on the exploration and development of State resources.
The government of the Philippines set out its RE goals in the National Renewable Energy Program (NREP), which seeks to increase the RE capacity of the country by 9,865 MW, reaching 15,304 MV by the year 2030, hence almost tripling its 2010 level.
(Source: Manila Bulletin)