PAMAPANGA, PHILIPPINES – Located 66 kilometers away from the country’s capital city of Manila, Pampanga is a vibrant and bustling province in Central Luzon that is rising to new economic heights. In the Department of Trade and Industry’s 2021 Cities and Municipalities Index, it ranked seventh among provinces in the country based on competitiveness in terms of economic dynamism, government efficiency, infrastructure, and resiliency.
Pampanga’s rapid development over the years is brought about by various factor including population growth, local and foreign investments, and a thriving industrial sector. One of the major forces that shaped the province’s business and civic landscape is the Nepomuceno family, whose long history of building businesses, institutions, and landmarks in the province, especially in Angeles City, have contributed significantly to local progress and development.
Their ventures started in 1922 with the establishment of the Angeles Ice Plant and, from there, successfully expanded into diverse industries, including power generation and distribution, soft drink manufacturing, real estate development and investment, construction, water distribution, and education.
The Nepomuceno family has become a key player in the province’s electric power industry, starting with power distribution through the Angeles Electric Corporation in 1923 and power generation through Angeles Power, Inc. in 1993.
In response to the government’s push for renewable energy and recognizing the potential demand for clean power in the country, the family became a pioneer in the local renewable energy space when they founded Raslag Corporation (RASLAG) in 2013, one of the first solar energy developers in the Philippines.
Derived from the Pampango word aslag meaning “light”, RASLAG is the brainchild of Engr. Peter G. Nepomuceno, the patriarch of the Nepomuceno Group of Companies of Angeles City and a well-respected veteran of the power industry, and Engr. Conrado D. Pecjo, a seasoned energy industry executive. The company’s vision is to be a leading renewable energy company that powers sustainable growth in the country. In line with this, they set about with a mission to provide reliable yet cost-effective renewable energy to its customers through high quality solar power projects.
RASLAG-1 and -2
Starting with a small core team of eight, the vision of RASLAG’s founders was immediately translated into two solar power plants: the 10.046 MWp RASLAG-1 Solar Power Plant and 13.141 MWp RASLAG-2 Solar Power Plant that are both located in Mexico, Pampanga, near the NLEX. These plants are running under the Philippines’ Feed-in Tariff Scheme.
RASLAG-1 was the second solar plant to be included in the first round of Feed-in Tariff (FIT) for Solar with a ₱9.68/kWh base tariff, while RASLAG-2 was the first solar plant in the second round of FIT for Solar with a ₱8.69/kWh base tariff. Both plants enjoy 20 years of guaranteed payment from the government with annual escalation in consideration of local inflation and foreign exchange. The plants also benefit from various privileges under the Renewable Energy Act, such as tax incentives and preferential dispatch of energy.
In view of the growing demand for renewable energy on the back of domestic economic expansion and a global trend towards sustainability, RASLAG has lined up three solar projects that it targets to complete within 5 years which would boost its generation capacity by nearly 6-fold. The company is nearing the completion of its 18.011 MWp RASLAG-3 Solar Power Plant, which is set for commercial operations by May 2022. This project alone will nearly double RASLAG’s generation capacity this year.
In addition, the company has commenced work for the development of the 35.2 MWp RASLAG-4 Solar Power Plant and has acquired the site for the 60 MWp RASLAG-5 Solar Power Plant. Within the next 10 years, RASLAG plans to further develop its project pipeline with the aim of scaling up its generation capacity by more than 10-fold to 250 MWp.
True to the Nepomuceno family’s commitment to ensuring the welfare of the region and the country, it has become part of RASLAG’s mission to uplift the communities where its plants are based. Among others, it provides educational materials and facilities to elementary schools in Barangays Suclaban, Gandus, and Acli in Mexico, Pampanga, which better equips these communities to improve the education of their children. Moreover, RASLAG generates hundreds of local jobs during the construction of its plants. Its solar power plants are also open for local tourism, especially for students coming from different schools and universities for educational tours. RASLAG likewise takes pride in being a leader in supplying clean power to the country, which helps create a better environment for Filipinos in the years ahead.