x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Taqa reports second quarter loss

Profits at Abu Dhabi National Energy, or Taqa, a utility with investments from Iraqi Kurdistan to the North Sea, fell 79 per cent over the first half of this year as the company continues to fix a leak at a North Sea platform.

Taqa's assets include the Bergermeer gas storage site in the Netherlands. Courtesy Taqa
Taqa's assets include the Bergermeer gas storage site in the Netherlands. Courtesy Taqa

Abu Dhabi National Energy Co, a utility with investments from Iraqi Kurdistan to the North Sea, posted a net loss for the second quarter of this year as the company continues to fix a leak at a North Sea platform.

The majority government-owned company, also known as Taqa, reported a net loss of Dh172 million (US$46.83m) for the quarter ending June 30, compared with a profit of Dh447m in the corresponding period in 2012. First half earnings fell 79 per cent to Dh525m as revenue dipped 4 per cent to Dh11.3 billion. Outages at power plants in Morocco, the United States and India, as well as 8,000 to 10,000 barrels per day (bpd) of lost production at its North Sea platform, led to the fall in profits.

Stephen Kersley, the chief financial officer, said he expected the operations to improve sufficiently by December that it would make a profit for the year. "The worst is behind us," he said.

Leaks in January and March at Taqa's Cormorant Alpha platform led to a drop in production as well as a temporary shutdown of the Brent Pipeline System.

In the next two months, the company hopes to install a vital clamp on a gas riser on a well leg that will allow the platform to resume pumping at full capacity.

The company is not considering a second listing in the United Kingdom, Mr Kersley said. Previous reports had pegged Taqa as one of the regional energy companies, along with Dana Gas and Gulf Marine Services, to be weighing the merits of a London offering to gain access to more active oil and gas-focused investors.

"We have no plans for a UK listing," he said.

Taqa finalised its acquisition of BP's North Sea assets in June and has received approval to develop the Clapham field, where it hopes to start pumping oil by 2015.

In another recent acquisition, at the Atrush field in the Kurdish region of Iraq, Taqa is testing its third well and hopes to begin producing oil by 2015, according to a development plan pending approval.

Companies like DNO and Genel have had to produce below capacity or build their own export pipelines because of a stand-off between the Iraqi federal government and the Kurdish regional government.

"We're confident that this is a great opportunity for us in Iraq, and we're confident that when we do produce we'll get paid," said Mr Kersley.

Construction at Bergermeer, a gas storage site in the Netherlands, is "progressing well" and on track to open in 2015, he said.

 

ayee@thenational.ae