Friday, April 6, 2012

Philippine Energy Contracting Round (PECR4) For Coal

The Department of Energy (DOE) on Wednesday said it received 69 bids
for 38 coal areas in its fourth Philippine Energy Contracting Round
(PECR4) for coal last March 30.

Undersecretary Jay Layug, Chairman of the DOE Review and Evaluation
Committee (REC), said the department opened 69 bids from various
companies who have expressed interest in investing in coal exploration
in the Philippines.

The REC is tasked to examine, evaluate, and review the legal,
technical, and financial qualifications of the PECR 4 applicants. In
determining the winning bidder, the REC will be guided by the criteria
set out in DOE Circular No. DC 2011-012-0010 (Reiterating a
Transparent and Competitive System of Awarding Service and Operating
Contracts for Petroleum and Coal Prospective Areas…), consisting of
legal qualification (10%); technical capability (30%); financial
credentials (30%); and work program (30%).

The opening of new bids clearly showed increased private companies'
interest to invest in exploration and development of indigenous coal
resources in the Philippines from the previous years. This development
will, once commercial production occurs, further reduce the country's
dependence on imported coal and will consequently result in dollar
savings arising from decreased coal importation.

Certain coal areas garnered multiple bids, particularly Areas 18-A and
18-B in Bislig and Lingig, Surigao del Sur, which the DOE considered
as the most prospective in coal resources. Areas that did not receive
any bids in PECR 4 will be offered in the next contracting round.

Some old and new players have submitted applications, including PNOC
Exploration Corp., Semirara Mining Corp., Benguet Corp., Blackstone
Mineral Resources, Inc., Altura Mining Phils. Inc., South Peak Coal
Resources, Inc., Superfine Mines and Minerals, Inc., and Empire Asia
Mining Corp.

The DOE expects to award the winning bidders their coal operating
contracts within 150 days from the opening of the applications.

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