Singapore Petroleum Company (SPC) has reported a sharp rise in its second quarter net profit to S$26.1 million from S$567,000 a year ago, thanks to high oil prices and strong refining margins.
(US$1=S$1.7). Revenue surged past the S$ billion mark to nearly S$1.08 billion, up by 13.3% from S$760.924 million in the second quarter of 2003.

Earnings per share (fully diluted) rose to 5.9 cents from 0.13 cent over the same period.

In a statement, the company said strong oil demand from the regional economies continued to underpin refining margins. It achieved refining margins of more than S$3.50 per barrel for the second quarter, down from US$4 per barrel for the first quarter.

It said that the continued strong oil demand from China and the rest of the region coupled with worries of supply disruptions kept oil prices and refining margins high in the second quarter.

“As a result of the higher (sales) volume, better (price) realisations and healthy refining margins, the group achieved a profit before tax of S$34.5 million for the second quarter, a significant improvement compared to the corresponding quarter of 2003,” it said.

Commenting on its upstream operations, SPC said that for the first half, its total oil and gas production averaged 2,700 barrels of oil equivalent per day. Its first half upstream revenue came to S$18 million, yielding profit of S$9 million.

Last month, SPC announced it had bought BP Singapore’s retail network and gas supply business for USS$70 million to further grow its earnings.