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Petronet LNG energises Q3 profit by 133% to `397 crore

Petronet LNG Ltd, India's biggest liquefied natural gas importer, has more than doubled its net profit to Rs 397 crore in the third quarter ended December 31 as it handled record volumes of imported gas.

Net profit in October-December at Rs 397 crore was 133 per cent higher than Rs 171 crore in the same period a year ago, Petronet Managing Director Prabhat Singh told reporters here.

"We handled 191 Trillion British thermal units (TBtus) in third quarter as compared to 140 TBtus of gas in the corresponding period of last year," he said.

While capacity utilisation at its 15 million tonnes Dahej terminal in Gujarat was 98 per cent, lack of pipeline to take gas to consumers limited capacity utilisation of the 5 million tonnes Kochi terminal in Kerala to just 6 per cent. "The significant increase in profit is due to higher volumes processed and better efficiency achieved in the operations," he said.

Singh said the company registered the highest-ever profit of Rs 1,235 crore in April-December 2016, 85 per cent higher than Rs 668 crore in the same period of previous fiscal. "This profit compares to highest PAT of Rs 1,149 crore in full fiscal."

He said EPC contract for further expansion of Dahej to 17.5 million tonnes has been awarded and work is under progress as scheduled.

Meanwhile, state-owned Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL) on Monday reported 53 per cent jump in the December quarter net profit on account of higher fuel sales and inventory gains.

The higher net profit of Rs 1,590 crore in the October- December quarter of the current fiscal was against Rs 1,041 crore clocked in the same period of 2015-16, HPCL Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh K Surana told reporters here.

The company earned $6.38 on turning every barrel of crude oil into fuel in the third quarter of 2016-17 as against a gross refining margin of $7.86 per barrel a year ago.

He said fuel sales increased 5.6 per cent to 9.02 million tons with petrol sales soaring 10.7 per cent, diesel sales by 5.1 per cent and LPG by 10.5 per cent.
HPCL made an inventory gain of Rs 700 crore as by the time it could process and turn crude oil purchased at a particular price into fuel, international rates had gone up, leading to higher valuation of stock. This compared to an inventory loss of Rs 430 crore.

The company also declared an interim dividend of Rs 22.50 per share, resulting in a total payout of Rs 2,751 crore including dividend distribution tax, he said.
"We have got board approval to raise Rs 6000 crore through domestic and overseas borrowings," he said. Surana said expansion of Visakh refinery to 15 million tons at Rs 20,928 crore will be completed by 2020.
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