Ratch as­signs B25bn for 2018 in­vest­ment

Bangkok Post - - BUSINESS - YUTHANA PRAIWAN

SET-listed Ratch­aburi Elec­tric­ity Gen­er­at­ing Hold­ing Plc (Ratch), the coun­try’s largest pri­vate power gen­er­a­tor, has an­nounced the al­lo­ca­tion of a cap­i­tal in­vest­ment bud­get to­talling 25 bil­lion baht for this year to ex­pand ca­pac­ity by 12%.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive Ki­jja Sri­patthangkura said the bud­get will go not only to power plant de­vel­op­ment, but also re­lated busi­ness such as the Yel­low and Pink mass tran­sit lines in the Bangkok metro area, liq­ue­fied nat­u­ral gas (LNG) fa­cil­i­ties and coal min­ing.

“We aim to ex­pand busi­ness both through new de­vel­op­ment and merger and ac­qui­si­tion (M&A) as­sets,” Mr Ki­jja said. “We es­ti­mate ca­pac­ity ex­pan­sion to 8,250 megawatts by the end of this year, up from 7,380MW at the end of last year.”

Of the to­tal bud­get for 2018, 10 bil­lion baht is for M&A of pro­duc­tive power gen­er­a­tion as­sets. The move is aimed at speed­ier ex­pan­sion than re­ly­ing on new de­vel­op­ment.

Ratch is talk­ing with sev­eral lo­cal busi­nesses that op­er­ate plants based on fos­sil­based power and re­new­ables, and it also ex­pects to fi­nalise two ac­qui­si­tion deals in the first half of this year.

The two deals would bring a com­bined ca­pac­ity of 370MW in Asean and Aus­tralia. Mr Ki­jja de­clined to dis­close fur­ther de­tails of the deals.

The re­main­ing 15 bil­lion baht is for project de­vel­op­ment, in­clud­ing the Mount Emer­ald wind power farm in Aus­tralia, which is un­der con­struc­tion and sched­uled to start op­er­a­tions in Septem­ber.

Also in Aus­tralia, Ratch has a de­vel­op­ment li­cence for the Collinsville so­lar power farm of 34MW to be­gin op­er­at­ing in July.

Ratch fur­ther­more plans to in­crease the de­vel­op­ment bud­get for the Fangcheng­gang nu­clear power plant in China, a project in which it holds a 10% stake.

The project al­ready in­cludes two op­er­a­tional units of power gen­er­a­tion; plans call for de­vel­op­ing a fur­ther three to six units over the next sev­eral years.

“Ratch ex­pects knowl­edge and tech­ni­cal learn­ing from the nu­clear power plant in China to be ap­plied to fu­ture nu­clear power in Thai­land, as Thai en­ergy pol­i­cy­mak­ers have set to build the first nu­clear power plant in the next decade,” Mr Ki­jja said.

More­over, Ratch holds a 10% stake in the Yel­low and Pink lines that are sched­uled to start de­vel­op­ment this month and be­gin op­er­at­ing in the fourth quar­ter of 2020.

The project’s com­bined bud­get is 100 bil­lion baht, led by Bangkok Mass Tran­sit Sys­tem Co and Sino-Thai En­gi­neer­ing and Con­struc­tion Plc.

Ratch es­ti­mates that the two lines will use 191MW of elec­tric­ity over the 25-year con­ces­sion from 2020.

For LNG fa­cil­i­ties, Ratch is talk­ing with PTT Plc about a fea­si­bil­ity study and pre­lim­i­nary de­sign.

Last year, Ratch re­ported a rev­enue de­cline of 9% to 46.438 bil­lion baht, due to sev­eral power gen­er­a­tion units be­ing shut down for re­pair and main­te­nance.

Net profit fell by 1% to 6.107 bil­lion baht as ex­penses rose by 12%.

RATCH shares closed yes­ter­day on the Stock Ex­change of Thai­land at 54 baht, down 25 sa­tang, in trade worth 61.7 mil­lion baht.

Ratch’s Hongsa coal-fired plant in Laos. The com­pany hopes to fi­nalise two ac­qui­si­tion deals in Asean and Aus­tralia dur­ing this half.

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