Consunji-led Semirara had a record first half but revenue growth is slowing

Semirara Mining and Power Corp. (SMPC) delivered a new all-time high performance in the first semester of the year, more than quadrupling its net income to P25.8 billion from only P6.3 billion.

For the second quarter, SMPC more than doubled its earnings to P10.8 billion from P4 billion in the same period last year on record coal selling prices and higher spot electricity sales volume at elevated prices.

Total shipments from April to June declined by 24 percent to 3.7 million metric tons (MT) as China imposed lockdowns and shifted to Russian coal.

Export sales plunged by 44 percent to 1.8 MMT while domestic sales rose12 percent to 1.9 MMT.

Heavy rainfall and higher stripping activities curbed coal production, dropping 21 percent to 3.4 MMT.

“As expected, we had a weaker performance quarter over quarter because of the China lockdowns but compared to last year, we did very well,” said SMPC president and COO Maria Cristina C. Gotianun.

“We maintain our view that the second semester will be anemic because of market volatility and unfavorable weather conditions,” she added.

For the power business, gross generation in the second quarter was mostly flat at 984 GWh as SCPC Unit 2 remained on forced outage because of a defective generator stator.

Total electricity sales fell nine percent to 900 GWh, most (56 percent) of which was sold to the spot market. The rest (393 GWh) was sold through bilateral contracts.

Total spot purchases dived 60 percent to P245 million on higher plant availability, which improved by eight percent to 65 percent.

Armed client holds bank staff hostage to access savings

An armed customer threatening to set himself ablaze held bank workers hostage throughout the day Thursday in Lebanon’s capital, demanding to withdraw his trapped savings to pay hospital fees, security sources and a family member said.