Semirara eyes P10B income turnaround

by Riza T. Olchondra, 06 May 2015
from Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines–Semirara Mining and Power Corp. is counting on the expansion of its Calaca coal-fired power plant to recover profitability from last year, even as a weak power segment dampened growth in its coal business.

“Between P9 billion and P10 billion” in consolidated income may be generated by Semirara this year, chairperson Isidro A. Consunji told reporters.

Besides overall growth in existing coal mining and power operations, the expansion of power facilities is expected to bring in additional income.

The first 300-megawatt (MW) expansion of Semirara’s 600-MW coal power plant in Batangas will start operating around midyear and will probably contribute P1 billion to the bottomline, he said.

“That’s the incremental contribution since operation is only for about half year. For a full year’s operation, it would have been around P2 billion,” he said.

Previously, the company’s consolidated net income fell 9 percent in 2014 to almost P6.9 billion, from P7.53 billion in 2013.

In a regulatory filing, Semirara said its coal segment posted record high production and coal sales at 8 million metric tons and 8.9 million tons, respectively.

Coal production was 6 percent higher while coal sales were higher by 16 percent compared to that of 2013.

The composite average price of coal posted at P2,127 per ton, dropped by 3 percent from P2,185 per ton, which was attributed to higher export prices, given the premium on higher coal quality.

Operating days were extended due to favorable weather; hence material movement was higher at 26 percent to 103 million bank cubic meter (bcm) from 82 million bcm in 2013, giving rise to the higher production.

However, Semirara’s power segment declined 45 percent, posting a net income after tax of P2.59 billion from P4.71 billion in 2013. Included in the net income after tax was the recognized income tax benefit of P636 million resulting from net operating loss carry over on the sustained losses on replacement power.

Total energy generated registered at 2,840 gigawatt-hours (GWh) compared to 2,638 Gwh in 2013.

The 22-percent decline was a result of the prolonged commissioning of the new distribution control system installed on Unit 2.

Total energy sold was 3,383 Gwh or 2 percent lower than 2013. Unit 1 registered higher availability at 84 percent compared to 83 percent in 2013, while Unit 2 registered lower availability of 50 percent compared to 83 percent in 2013 because of the prolonged shutdown in the first half.

Composite average price was lower by 15 percent at P3.64 per kilowatt-hour (kwh) compared to P4.26 per kwh in 2013 due to the negative impact of the drop in the Newcastle Index while cost of energy sold was higher at P2.75 per kwh.

This cost was up 48 percent compared to 2013 because of the higher cost of replacement power, which the company sourced from the spot market.

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