Milaha's Q1 financials strong ahead of challenging year

Milaha announces strong financial results for Q1, but warns of 'challenging year' ahead
Sheikh Ali bin Jassim Al Thani, chairman of Milaha
Sheikh Ali bin Jassim Al Thani, chairman of Milaha

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Qatar Navigation (Milaha) has announced strong financial results for the three months ending March 31, 2015, with year on year growth in the core businesses offsetting decline in sectors such as oil and gas.

Continued strong growth in trade volumes, driven by the ramp up in project activity in Qatar, resulted in a 25% increase in revenue and 175% increase in net profit for Milaha Maritime & Logistics, with a positive impact on Port Services and Container Shipping units in particular.

Operating revenue in the first quarter was US $215-million, a 12% increase compared to the same period last year, while net profit increased 4% to US $100-million.

Each of Milaha’s core segments – Maritime & Logistics, Gas & Petrochem and Offshore – improved their combined bottom line by 71% relative to Q1 2014.

Milaha Gas & Petrochem’s revenue grew by 39% and its net profit by 45%, on the back of stronger performance in its fully owned and operated product tanker and gas carriers, as well as higher VLGC rates relative to Q1 2014. In addition, the segment benefited from the full year effect of 19 harbour vessels, some of which were received mid-year 2014.

Milaha Offshore improved significantly from Q1 2014 despite weaker market conditions driven by the steep decline in oil prices and the cutbacks on capital spending by oil majors in the region and beyond.

“We are very pleased to have started 2015 so strongly overall,” said Sheikh Ali bin Jassim Al Thani, chairman of Milaha. “And while we hope to maintain the momentum, we know that general market conditions for our Offshore segment are weakening, and that our Capital segment is heavily tied to uncertainties in the local equity market. It will be a challenging year.”

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