Unocal acquires additional interest in Thailand power project
Unocal Thailand, Ltd., today announced the signing of an agreement to acquire a 30-percent interest in Amata Power (Rayong) Limited, a power plant project in eastern Thailand.
The shareholders' agreement was signed with Amata Power Limited on March 30. In February, Unocal had purchased a 30% share in Amata Power (Bangpakong) Limited, also from Amata Power. Unocal Rayong, Ltd., a subsidiary of Unocal International Corp., is participating in this venture, which further allows Unocal to build up its power portfolio in Thailand in addition to Independent Power (Thailand), Ltd. (IPT), in Si Racha. Unocal has a 24-percent interest in the 700-megawatt gas-turbine power plant under Thailand's Independent Power Producer (IPP) program. IPT is now scheduled to come on stream in the third quarter this year.
The Rayong project consists of a natural gas-fired cogeneration plant and two package boilers located in Amata City Rayong Industrial Estate, Rayong, southeast of Bangkok. The plant has a capacity of generating eight megawatts and up to 60 tons per hour of steam. The commercial operation date is expected in April this year. A gas supply agreement was signed with the Petroleum Authority of Thailand in August 1999.
"The plant is located in a well-developed industrial estate, thus creating opportunities to expand the generation capacity and to develop related utility activities, e.g., natural gas and water supplies," said Randy Howard, Unocal Corporation Vice President of International Energy Operations and Unocal Thailand President. "As a gas company, Unocal continues to find ways to serve Thailand through the finding and developing of gas and condensate, as well as the development of related businesses, including power generation," said Howard.
"Gas is a fuel of choice in Thailand because it is environmentally friendly," said Harald Link, Executive Chairman of Amata Power. Howard added, "The price of natural gas in the Gulf of Thailand is currently about half of fuel oil, the traditional competing fuel for power generation. So it makes sense to use gas."
Natural gas is also plentiful to Thai consumers. "While gas has been used in Thailand for nearly two decades (since 1981), additional gas resources continue to be discovered -- both in Thailand and in nearby countries. These resources will be available for Thailand's use over the next several decades," Howard concluded.
With the completion of the transaction, 70 percent of the shares in the Amata venture will be owned by Amata Power Limited, which is owned by Energie Baden-Wuerttemburg (30%), B. Grimm Bayernwerk Electrowatt Ltd. (51.2%), Bang Pakong Industrial Park 2 Public Co., Ltd. (13.77%), and B. Grimm Joint Venture Holding Limited (5.03%).
Unocal Corporation is the parent company of Unocal Thailand, Ltd., the leading supplier of natural gas and condensate to the Kingdom, with about 1 billion cubic feet a day of gas supply and close to 40,000 barrels per day of condensate, from 13 fields in the Gulf of Thailand (Unocal's net interest approximately 60%).
Unocal operates the fields on behalf of its co-concessionaires -- Mitsui Oil Exploration Co., Ltd., PTT Exploration & Production Public Company Limited, Amerada Hess (Thailand) Ltd., and Moeco Thai Oil Development Co., Ltd.
Updated: May 2000