KUALA LUMPUR, May 6 ― MISC Bhd has returned to the black in the first quarter ended March 31, 2021 (Q1), registering a net profit of RM429.80 million compared with a net loss of RM1.16 billion recorded in the same quarter last year.
Revenue for the quarter under review inched up 1.1 per cent to RM2.54 billion from RM2.51 billion previously, it said in a filing to Bursa Malaysia.
Commenting on prospects, the company said spot charter rates in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipping market fell sharply in February and March 2021 after hitting historically high levels in January.
“The decline in charter rates was broadly due to weakening global spot trade as seasonal winter demand in Asia eased and this was aggravated by a large wave of new build LNG carriers being delivered.
“Furthermore, more US spot cargoes were destined to Europe instead of Asia, thereby requiring less vessel capacity. If this situation persists, spot charter rates could potentially fall further in the near term but there could be some potential upside if countries start stockpiling earlier in the summer for the winter months,” it added.
MISC also reiterated that most of its LNG carriers are on long-term charters including the six new very large ethane carriers that joined the fleet recently which will provide revenue growth to the LNG Asset Solutions segment.
In the meantime, the segment will continue to pursue available growth opportunities in the market.
In another development, the crude tanker market had a sluggish start in 2021, with rates still suffering from the continuing oil production cuts by the Opec+ alliance. The recent blockage of the Suez Canal has had a positive impact on spot rates, but its duration was short lived. ― Bernama