Lyttelton Port returns to 1H profit on increased trade flows

Article – BusinessDesk

Feb. 29 (BusinessDesk) – Lyttelton Port, which was forced to take a $23 million charge on earthquake damage last year, returned to first half profit on record trade volumes even as the regions earthquakes continue.

Lyttelton Port returns to 1H profit on increased trade flows

By Hannah Lynch

Feb. 29 (BusinessDesk) – Lyttelton Port, which was forced to take a $23 million charge on earthquake damage last year, returned to first half profit on record trade volumes even as the regions earthquakes continue.

Profit was $2.8 million for the six months ended Dec. 31, from a loss of $10.1 million a year earlier, the Christchurch-based company said in a statement. Revenue increase 9.4 percent to $51 million.

The company reported an earthquake-adjusted profit after tax of $9.5 million up from a $6.1 million a year earlier. In the full year, profit is expected to be between $16 million to $18 million on the same basis.

An increase in cargo flows was led by a rise in containers, log exports and bulk imports. Total container volumes rose 12 percent to a record 165,231 units. Log exports increased 19.7 percent to 161,020 tonnes.

City Port, its inland terminal, handled record numbers of empty containers, with a corresponding increase in related container services.

In total the port moved 2.5 million tonnes of cargo through the port compared with 2.4 million in the same period a year earlier.

“Trade volumes are expected to continue their strong growth in the second-half of the current financial year,” the company said in a statement. “The customer base has also grown through the period with the addition of two new weekly container services that resulted in record container volumes,”

The port has begun repairs on its coal loader and supporting wharf, pavement repairs in the container terminal and the City Depot. It remains in talks with insurers over an $11 million progress claim made in August that increased to $20 million due to additional expenditure. To date a total of $35.7 million has been received in relation to the insurance.

The board has suspended dividend payouts to shareholders until progress has been made with insurers.

Shares in the port rose 0.4 percent to $2.05.

(BusinessDesk)

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