Prime Infrastructure Holdings—controlled by billionaire Enrique Razon, Jr.—is deepening its investments in renewable energy with its latest plan to build the world’s largest solar facility in the Philippines.
The privately held company, which announced last week that it’s acquiring a controlling interest in the Malampaya gas project in the West Philippine Sea, said Wednesday its unit Terra Solar Philippines will build a solar farm that can generate between 2,500 megawatts to 3,500 megawatts of electricity. When completed, the facility—which will also have a mega battery that can store as much as 4,500 megawatt hours of electricity—will surpass the capacity of the Bhadla Solar Park, the world’s biggest operating solar farm which produces 2,250 megawatts in northern India.
Prime Infra said it will leverage its partnership with Solar Philippines—founded by businessman Leandro Leviste, a Forbes 30 Under 30 alumnus—to identify potential sites for the project in northern and southern Luzon, the company said in an emailed reply to Forbes Asia. Solar Philippines, which is currently building a solar farm in the province of Nueva Ecija, some 100 kilometers north of Manila, is the partner of Prime Infra in developing another solar farm in Tarlac, about 70 kilometers west of Nueva Ecija. Financial details of the project weren’t disclosed.
“Prime Infra finds a sweet spot to pursue solar as we take advantage of the steep decline in installation costs over the past decade and the improved battery energy storage system technology that allows us to build an economically critical and socially relevant infrastructure at a scale the world has never seen before,” Guillaume Lucci, president and CEO of Prime Infra, said in a statement.
Terra Solar had last year signed an agreement to supply about 850 megawatts of electricity to the Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), the country’s biggest privately held utility that powers Metro Manila and nearby provinces. It will start supplying 600 megawatts to Meralco, partly owned by billionaire Lance Gokongwei’s JG Summit, in 2026, with another 250 megawatts coming on line the following year.
Besides solar energy, Razon through Prime Infra has been investing in hydropower plants and water utilities in recent years. In June 2021, Trident Water, a subsidiary of his infrastructure-focused Prime Strategic Holdings, took control of water utility Manila Water from Ayala Corp. Razon is also the controlling shareholder of global port giant International Container Terminal Services Inc. and Bloomberry Resorts, operator of the Solaire Resort and Casino in Manila. Razon has a net worth of $6.1 billion, according to Forbes’ real-time data.