Sri Lanka Watawala Plantations December net profit up 28-pct

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s Watawala Plantations said net profit for the December 2015 quarter rose 28 percent to 188 million rupees from a year ago as costs and tax expense fell while tea and palm oil generated profits.

Earnings per share for the quarter were 75 cents. Sales fell 15 percent to 1.4 billion rupees, a stock exchange filing said.

EPS for the nine months to December 2015 rose to 1.85 rupees from 1.73 rupees the year before although sales fell.

Tea plantations made a profit of 30 million rupees in the December 2015 quarter against a loss of 54 million rupees the year before and profits from tea exports rose while palm oil profits fell to 122 million rupees from 198 million rupees.

Watawala Plantations Managing Director Vish Govindasamy said its tea plantations business reduced losses to 213 million rupees in the nine months to December 2015 from 253 million rupees a year ago.

“The decline in the tea sector performance is attributed to the decrease in production year-on-year,” he said.

Palm oil sales fell four percent in the nine months to 1,179 million rupees from the year before mainly because of a reduction in crop and Crude Palm Oil production, while prices fell marginally with the drop in global palm oil prices.

“However the segment made a significant contribution to company’s profitability, having made a net profit of 558 million rupees compared to 619 million rupees (the year before),” Govindasamy said.

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