26 September 2001 13:25 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (CNI)--RWE-DEA, the petroleum division of German utilities group RWE, doubled its profits for the year to 30 June, aided by an improved performance from its petrochemicals activities.
Operating profits at RWE-DEA reached Euro844m ($773m) from Euro407m and sales rose nearly 12% to Euro20.1bn, RWE announced in its full year results statement on Wednesday.
RWE-DEA comprises the upstream exploration and production unit, plus the DEA Mineraloel downstream oil products and petrochemicals unit. It sold its Condea chemicals activities to South Africa's Sasol earlier this year and it plans, subject to regulatory approval, to combine DEA Mineraloel with Shell's German downstream operations in a 50:50 joint venture.
A spokesman for RWE-DEA told CNI that petrochemicals volumes for 2000-01 rose to 2.7m tonne from 2.6m tonne. He declined to disclose sales revenues or profits figures but said both increased compared with 1999-2000. RWE-DEA's full results will be disclosed on 17 October, he added.
RWE-DEA's upstream unit made an "above-average" contribution to the division's full year profits, and strong refinery margins in the downstream unit also boosted results, stated parent group RWE.
For the current financial year, which spans the six months to 31 December 2001 (due to RWE's transition to the calendar fiscal year), RWE-DEA is expected to suffer lower profits. Both the upstream and downstream sectors will be hit, warned RWE, with the upstream unit impacted by lower crude oil prices.
At group level, RWE recorded a 41% hike in 2000-01 operating profits to just under Euro4bn, boosted by the first-time consolidation of German energy utility VEW and Thames Water, as well as the higher profits from RWE-DEA. Net sales grew some 31% to Euro63bn.
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