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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        31 January 2011

European solar company eyes Philippines

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Amsterdam-based SunConnex plans to invest in solar power projects across the Philippines.

Jos Schlangen, SunConnex business development manager, said the company is keen on putting up between five- and 10-megawatt solar plants and has begun talks with potential partners for these projects.

"We can't disclose names as we are in the process of closing contracts, but we are all over in the country, Luzon, Mindanao and Visayas," he said.

SunConnex is a solar power developer with more than 20 years experience in the industry. The company is present in five European countries, distributing various branded products and technologies.

For its proposed solar projects in the Philippines, SunConnex will initially invest $100 million, which could be financed through borrowing and equity from potential partners.

The proposed projects, however, would depend on the approval of the feed-in tariff (FIT) for renewable energy projects.

The FIT, which was mandated by the Renewable Energy Act of 2008, sets guaranteed payments over a definite period for renewable energy developers.

"Of course, we are waiting for FIT to be released then we are able to build a project," Schlangen said.

The executive said that SunConnex eventually aims to put up large-scale solar power projects in the country with over 50 megawatts generating capacity.

"We are the developer and we have local partners also to construct and to build, and we take care also of financing, and we do it ourselves or we could do it also with partners," he said.

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