SAN Miguel Corp (SMC) will buy shares of Metro Pacific Investments Corp (MPIC) in Manila North Harbor Port Inc (MNHPI), making it a partner in the development and operation of the North Harbor.
This follows approval by the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) of the Romero family’s proposal to buy out its joint venture partner MPIC in MNHPI. The Romero family-led Harbour Centre Port Terminal Inc (HCPTI) owns 65% of MNHPI; MPIC owns the rest.
In the last few weeks, HCPTI and MPIC have been wrangling over ownership control of MNHPI, which holds the 25-year contract to operate the country’s biggest domestic terminal. MPIC recently decided to sell its shares after failing to secure majority stake in the company.
PPA general manager Oscar Sevilla over the weekend said SMC would eventually buy all shares of MPIC in MNHPI valued at around P350 million.
The change in the MNHPI ownership structure would, however, still require prior approval by the PPA Board.
SMC is apparently quickly diversifying into the port and terminal business. Recently, it offered to buy Mariveles Grains Terminal from Asian Terminals, Inc (ATI). The transaction has yet to be approved by ATI shareholders.