Australia’s Origin posts loss on impairment charge
Origin Energy, the owner of a 37.5 percent stake in the Australia Pacific LNG project, swung to a loss in the first half of the financial year due to a previously announced impairment charge of A$533 million ($423.4 million).
Origin reported a net loss of A$207 million for the period under review. This compares to a net loss of A$1.6 billion in the same period a year before.
On the other side, Origin more than tripled its half-year underlying profit on the back of soaring energy prices and Australia Pacific LNG.
Underlying profit after tax for the six months ended Dec. 31 rose to A$582 million ($461.12 million) from A$184 million a year ago,
Underlying EBITDA from continuing operations increased A$502 million or 51 percent to A$1.49 billion.
The Sydney-based company said the Australia Pacific LNG performed “strongly” across both the upstream and downstream operations and has now shipped more than 200 LNG cargoes.
Planned maintenance was also completed on both LNG trains during the half, with excess gas volumes directed to the domestic market during the period.
“In FY2018, Australia Pacific LNG is expected to be cash flow break-even at around US$45/boe, compared to previous guidance of US$48/boe with the reduction primarily driven by revised non-operated development activity, deferral of some exploration activity and higher spot LNG and domestic revenues,” the company added.
Origin said it is on track to cut net debt to less than A$7 billion by June.
Chief Executive Frank Calabria said debt reduction along with improving underlying returns would be key measures for reviving the company’s dividend that was suspended in 2016.