KUALA LUMPUR (AFX-ASIA) – Petronas Gas Bhd said its year to March 2004 net profit fell to RM641.93 million from RM656.80 million a year earlier, on lower demand from the power sector and higher plant maintenance expenditure and depreciation charges. (US$1=RM3.8).

Sales fell to RM2.23 billion from RM2.24 billion a year ago as a result of a lower volume of gas processed, while pretax profit declined to RM740.88 million from RM779.09 million.

On a quarterly basis, the fourth quarter net profit amounted to RM170.87 million, with sales up RM23.9 million from the third quarter to RM573.84 million due to higher gas volumes processed and utility sales.

The fourth quarter pretax profit rose RM7.6 million from the third quarter to RM184.10 million.

On its prospects for 2005, Petronas Gas said revenue from the utilities business is expected to remain at current levels, consistent with projected customers’ demand, but revenue from its gas processing and transmission business is projected to increase ahead of higher flowrate revenue, resulting from higher daily average volumes of processed gas.