By Myrna M. Velasco
Lopez-majority owned Energy Development Corporation (EDC) is targeting to expand geothermal investments in Taiwan, a top executive of the conglomerate has disclosed to the media.
“In Taiwan, we have concession, and we’re working with the proponents to see what we can do. We hope to do one thing in Taiwan… we’re talking to a number of local players,” EDC Board Director Francis Giles B. Puno said.
The Lopez company executive explained that they somehow have leverage in Taiwan “because we work with the utilities there and many of them are substantially untapped potential because they need the expertise as well. In that sense, EDC can provide that.”
At this stage, he noted that what EDC has is basically a “concession” for a geothermal service area for exploration, hence, the target is to ensure first that the prospects would eventually yield commercially-viable outcome.
Yet even prior to this targeted investment entry in Taiwan, Puno qualified that EDC is considerably a globally entrenched player in the geothermal sector – primarily in the provision of exploration and drilling services in key markets like Kenya and Japan.
“We’re doing drilling operations in Japan, we’re doing drilling operations even in Africa in Kenya – in services, we’re in a way gaining the experience,” Puno stressed.
He further qualified “we’re always in the international arena – we’ve not focused on areas where we feel we don’t have competitive advantage. Our competitive advantage is in geothermal, so that’s where we choose to play in the international arena.”
Other than these offshore ventures, he indicated that Indonesia remains an interesting market in the company’s radar especially when the election ruckus in that country will already settle.
“We have a concession in Indonesia, we also try to look for a local partner. Indonesia is interesting for us,” the Lopez firm executive stressed.
Beyond these core markets, EDC also looked at geothermal concessions in Latin American countries – primarily in Chile and Peru; but developments have yet to advance in these targeted markets.
EDC is currently the biggest geothermal industry player in the Philippines; enabling the country then to have the third largest geothermal energy portfolio in the world.