US Exim has signed an MOU with the Philippine Department of Energy, worth a potential US$1bn.

The crux of the agreement is that both parties will try to find areas in which US exporters can become involved with LNG and renewable energy projects in the Philippines.

The country is hoping to upgrade and expand its energy supply – much of which was devastated by Typhoon Yolanda.

Before the typhoon hit in November 2013, the year had brought a substantial amount of commercial lending into the Filipino energy sector.

In July, a syndicate of banks led by BDO Capital, Rizal Commercial Bank and China Commercial Bank pumped US$130mn into the Pilala wind farm project. This marked the first time a Filipino renewable energy project received full project finance based on feed-in tariffs.

BDO was again involved in October, when it arranged a US$556mn loan for a coal-fired plant near Davao City. At the time, energy secretary Carlos Petilla said the government hoped to bring an additional 800MW of electricity online by 2017.

The strategy has been revised post-Yolanda. Philippine company Energy Development Corp reported that the typhoon damaged the cooling towers of three geothermal power plants in the country.

Asian Development Bank vice-president Stephen Groff visited the disaster zone in Leyte shortly after the typhoon. He said that the reconstruction work would need to be widespread “with the power sector, roads, airports, and ports struggling to keep up with demand”.

Patricia Loui, a member of US Exim’s executive board, says: “Since 1993, US Exim has provided US$1.3bn in energy-sector finance to the Philippines, but we aim to outdo ourselves and target another billion with this MOU. Our expertise can contribute both to the renovation of current energy-production facilities and the construction of new ones.”