Malaysia’s Petronas reports higher profit; doubles payout to government

MALAYSIA'S state energy company Petronas on Tuesday (Aug 30) reported a surge in second-quarter profit, boosted by higher oil and gas prices and said that it would double its dividend to the government this year.

The world's fourth-biggest LNG exporter said profit for the April-June period totalled RM23 billion (S$7.2 billion), compared with 9.6 billion ringgit profit in the same quarter last year.

Revenue rose 63 per cent to RM93.3 billion.

Petronas will pay the Malaysian government, its sole shareholder, a total of RM50 billion (US$11.16 billion)in a dividend this year, president and group CEO Tengku Muhammad Taufik said at a media briefing.

The company was earlier expected to pay RM25 billion - the same as last year - but the government made a request for a higher amount, he said.

Petronas is a significant source of revenue for the Malaysian government, which is grappling with higher expenses this year for subsidies and cash aid payments to offset inflation.

The government has said it expects to spend a record US$18 billion in subsidies for fuel and cooking oil amid surging commodity prices.

Tengku Muhammad Taufik said oil prices would start to correct gradually next year as supply normalises. REUTERS

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