February 23, 2018 / 5:59 AM / in 8 months

Malaysia palm oil company FGV says Q4 net profit fell by a third

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 23 (Reuters) - Malaysia’s Felda Global Ventures Bhd, the world’s third biggest palm plantation operator, on Friday said net profits for the last quarter fell by a third year-on-year.

FGV saw net profits of 76.6 million ringgit ($19.62 million) for the quarter that ended in December, down from 112 million ringgit the previous year, it said in a local stock exchange filing during the midday break on Friday.

The company’s income statement indicated the losses were prompted by higher costs and losses in joint venture companies.

Revenue fell to 4.3 billion ringgit, down from 5.2 billion ringgit last year.

FGV said its crude palm oil production in 2017 increased on-year by 12 percent to 2.99 million tonnes, in line with growth of its fresh fruit bunch (FFB) production.

“(A reduced labour shortage) will improve harvesting efficiency, and is expected to increase this year’s FFB production by 9 percent to 4.85 million tonnes,” the company said in a statement.

Palm oil production is largely expected to rise this year as crops shake off the lingering dry weather effects triggered by the El Nino in 2015.

Output in Malaysia, the world’s second largest producer after Indonesia, is estimated at 20.5 million tonnes in 2018, according to a Reuters poll and industry body the Malaysian Palm Oil Board.

FGV’s shares were trading 1.5 percent lower before the break, underperforming the benchmark index which was up 0.2 percent. ($1 = 3.9050 ringgit) (Reporting by Emily Chow; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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