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Jakarta Post

PGN profits fall 27 percent amid weakening rupiah exchange rate, lower revenue

  • Norman Harsono
    Norman Harsono

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, May 4, 2020   /   03:10 pm
PGN profits fall 27 percent amid weakening rupiah exchange rate, lower revenue A technician checks a compressed natural gas (CNG) mobile refueling unit owned by PT Perusahaan Gas Negara (PGN) in Bandung, West Java, on Dec. 12, 2019. (Antara/Raisan Al Farisi)

Indonesia’s top gas distributor, PGN, booked a sharp profit slump in this year’s first quarter, largely due to the weakening rupiah exchange rate, despite a modest increase in sales volume.

PGN, which operates over 90 percent of the country’s gas pipe network, recorded US$47.8 million in profits between January and March, down 26.7 percent year-on-year (yoy). Foreign exchange losses alone due to the fall in the rupiah exchange rate to the US dollar cost the company $63.2 million, nearly triple that of last year’s figure.

The company reported on Sunday that its earnings were “very much affected” by the rupiah’s slump in March, when the Indonesian currency slid to Rp 16,000 against the greenback, a level unseen since the 1998 financial crisis.

PGN’s balance sheet shows that revenue fell a slight 0.3 percent yoy to $873.8 million in the first quarter. Revenue fell even as the gas distribution volume grew a slight 0.2 percent yoy to 882 billion British thermal units per day (bbtud) while the company’s customer base grew 76.6 percent yoy to 405,097 users.

“In the first quarter of 2020, the number of customers grew alongside industry, electricity growth and gas pipe network development,” PGN corporate secretary Rachmat Hutama said in a statement.

The company also reduced costs 0.8 percent yoy to $586.8 million. The steepest decline in costs was recorded in the company’s upstream businesses.

PGN shares, traded at the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) under PGAS, weakened 4.09 percent in early trading on Monday, deeper than the Jakarta Composite Index (JCI), which declined 2.35 percent, Bloomberg data shows.