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SMRT's 2017 after-tax profit sinks 68% to S$26m

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Temasek-owned rail operator SMRT Corp has posted a drastic drop in net earnings as it continues to ramp up resources to catch up with repairs and maintenance works.

TEMASEK-OWNED rail operator SMRT Corp has posted a sharp drop in earnings as it continues to ramp up resources to catch up with repairs and maintenance works.

In its latest group review released on Tuesday, the group stated that its 2017 after-tax profit fell 67.9 per cent from S$81 million in 2016 to to S$26 million last year, possibly a two-decade low.

Revenue dipped 2.4 per cent to S$791 million from S$811 million previously, as total passenger-kilometres -a measure of how long commuter trips were - shrank from 8,322 million to 8,271 million.

Operating expenses rose 6.9 per cent to S$785 million from S$734 million in 2016, due to higher maintenance-related expenses for the ageing network and preparation for operating Tuas West Extension, said SMRT.

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Ridership rose from 756 million to 768 million.

In its review, SMRT said it is aiming to raise rail reliability on its North-South, East-West lines to one delay per 300,000km - up from 180,400km and 151,400km on the North-South and East-West lines respectively last year.

THE STRAITS TIMES