25 · Feb · 2019
PETRONAS Chemicals Closes 2018 on Record Performance 92% Plant Utilisation, 15% PAT Growth
Kuala Lumpur, 25 February —PETRONAS Chemicals Group Berhad (PCG) achieved record performance with highest revenue, Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) and Profit After Tax (PAT) for the 12-month period ended 31 December 2018.
Revenue grew 12% year-on-year to RM19.6 billion driven by higher production and sales volume coupled with higher average product prices. The Group sustained its excellent operational performance with plant utilisation rate of 92% notwithstanding the heavy statutory turnaround activities completed at several of its major plants during the year. Average product prices was higher during most of 2018 lifted by the buoyant crude oil prices then.
The Group's EBITDA recorded an increase of 5% year-on-year to RM7.0 billion from RM6.6 billion, on higher sales volume and improved product spreads, while its EBITDA margin stood at 36%. In line with the higher revenue and EBITDA, PAT increased 15% year-on-year to RM5.1 billion from RM4.4 billion in 2017.
Following the strong performance, the Board of Directors declared a second interim dividend for the year ended 31 December 2018 of 18 sen per ordinary share amounting to RM1,440 million, which will be payable in March 2019. This is in addition to the first interim dividend of 14 sen per share which was paid to investors in September 2018. For FY 2018, the total dividend amounted to 32 sen or RM2,560 million. The cumulative dividend of 32 sen per share is the highest payout for the Company.
Commenting on the results, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Sazali Hamzah said, "l am pleased to report another solid year for PCG as a result of effective implementation of our operational and commercial strategies. It also reflects the Group's capability and dedication in achieving excellence through planning and focused execution particularly during heavy turnaround activities".
'Our petrochemical plants at the Pengerang Integrated Complex (PIC) are progressing well at 96% project completion and expected to commence commercial operations in the second half of 2019. This additional capacity and range of new products will complement our ability to serve our customers' diverse and growth requirements," he added.
Sazali said that although petrochemical products prices are currently softening, the demand outlook of the products remain strong in the Asia Pacific region. "With our strong operational performance, combined with new product offerings from PIC, PCG is well positioned to address market challenges," he concluded.