Business

PetroChina suffer dramatic fall in first-quarter profit

PetroChina, China's biggest oil and gas producer, reported a sharper-than-expected 82% fall in first-quarter profit, due to lower international crude prices and inventory writedowns at its refining division.

Net profit declined to 6.15 billion yuan (RM3.5 billion) in the first three months from 34.2 billion a year ago, the state-run company said on Monday. The figures were calculated using international accounting standards.

The unaudited earnings compared with an average forecast of 8.01 billion yuan by four analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters.

Last month, PetroChina reported a 67% slump in net profit for the fourth quarter, lagging forecasts. The company has said it will cut spending and divest more assets this year.

For the first quarter, PetroChina reported a 67 drop in its operating profits to 17.3 billion yuan as its realised crude prices declined 51.2% to $48.87 per barrel.

Its refining and chemical segment widened losses to 5.1 billion yuan from 2.2 billion yuan a year earlier, PetroChina said. Its retail and distribution division moved into the red, generating an operating loss of 2.6 billion yuan versus a profit of 3.3 billion yuan a year ago.

Its natural gas import business saw an improvement, with losses shrinking by nearly 5 billion yuan to 7.2 billion yuan in the first three months. – Reuters, April 27, 2015.

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