UpdateThai PTT, SCC shares slump on halt to Mab Ta Phut projects

30 September 2009 10:11  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS news)--Thailand’s petrochemical stocks, led by PTT affiliates and Siam Cement (SCC), fell sharply on Wednesday following a court decision temporarily stopping construction of 76 projects at the Mab Ta Phut industrial estate in Rayong province.

The two companies accounted for 80% of the baht (Bt) 400bn ($11.9bn) worth of projects involved, said Naphat Chantaraserekul, a Bangkok-based senior investment analyst at brokerage Kim Eng Securities.

"There will be a short-term negative impact on sentiment but I wouldn’t expect operations to be affected," he said.

At 16:27 Singapore time (08:27 GMT), PTT's subsidiaries slumped, with PTT Chemicals shedding 4.85%, PTT Aromatics down 3.92% and IRPC 1.36% lower.

PTT slipped 0.39% while SCC retreated 2.64%.

Thailand’s Central Administrative Court has ordered a temporary halt to the projects, acting on growing public protests against environmental pollution.

The Mab Ta Phut industrial estate is the eighth-largest petrochemical hub in the world and is home to manufacturing facilities of more than 50 chemical companies.

On the court decision’s possible repercussions on long-term investments at the site, Kim Eng’s Chantaraserekul said: “Welcome to Thailand!”

SCC said in a filing to the Stock Exchange of Thailand that its polyolefins projects due for start-up between late 2009 and mid-2011 would be affected.

PTT also expressed concerns in a separate filing that its investments in 25 projects might be affected, a day after the court decision was handed down late on Tuesday.

The company said it was mulling the filing of an appeal to the Supreme Administrative Court.

The companies have 30 days to appeal the decision by the Central Administrative Court, Chantaraserekul said.

($1 = Bt33.67)

With additional reporting by Bohan Loh

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By: Pearl Bantillo
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