Friday, October 5, 2012

20121005 1014 Malaysia Corporate Related News.

The key KLCI powered to a new record as plantation stocks lifted the 30-stock barometer by 12.31pts or nearly 1% to 1,662.06 in mid-afternoon trade. At the close, the index gained 11.72pts or 0.71% to 1,661.47 after news that the Cabinet could decide as early as today on a proposal to slash export taxes for palm oil, giving a fillip to blue-chip planters. (Starbiz)

Local palm oil refiners have been able to return to profitability in recent weeks following a steep fall in the crude palm oil (CPO) prices which has reversed earlier negative profit margins. The positive profit margins were achieved as prices for CPO fell while the prices for its finished products refined palm oil olein price remained stable, thus broadening their profit margin. Palm Oil Refiners Association of Malaysia (Poram) chief executive officer Mohamad Jaafar Ahmad said the profit margins could be in the range of 1% to 2% depending on various factors, adding that the ideal  figure is between 5% and 6%. (Malaysian Reserve)

The proposed cut on export duty for crude palm oil (CPO), from 23% to between 8% and 10%, may not have the desired effect on downstream players seeking an abolishment of duty-free quotas for the commodity. The Palm Oil Refiners Association of Malaysia (Poram) said the tax reduction would not be effective unless the duty-free quotas for CPO exports were also suspended. Nonetheless, the association has described the proposed tax cut as a step in the right direction. (Financial Daily)

Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) says it has not appointed any company to build biogas plants at its mills. Referring to report published in a local newspaper on Monday, it said to date no decision had been made with regard to the award of the contract. It was reported that  Weida (M) Bhd would build a biogas plant under a pilot project for FGV to treat palm oil mill effluence. (StarBiz)

Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd (KLK) is venturing into Papua New Guinea (PNG) to plant oil palms. The group said it is planning to buy a company that has leasehold rights over 44,342 hectares of agriculture land there.KLK is expected to pay US$8.7m (RM27m) to Hii Eii Sing, a Malaysian national, to secure 51% control of Collingwood Plantations Pte Ltd (CPPL). KLK has so far planted up around 205,000ha in Malaysia and Indonesia. KLK plantations director Roy Lim Kiam Chye said: "It's a greenfield venture. If and when this deal completes in the 1Q13, it'll bump up our plantation landbank by 20% to around 290,000ha." (BT)

Local palm oil refiners have been able to return to profitability in recent weeks following a steep fall in the crude palm oil (CPO) prices and vehicle components for original equipment manufacturers in Malaysia. OSI and Faurecia will set up a 35%:65% JV company, Faurecia HICOM Emissions Control Technologies (M) Sdn Bhd (Faurecia HICOM) to undertake the activities. (BT)

The UEM Group yesterday said it will sell its 100% stake in Special Builders Sdn Bhd via an open tender to a qualified Bumiputera entrepreneur. Special Builders provides end-of-life vehicle recycling, recovery and disposal (ELV) services. ―It was chosen for this divestment exercise as it could offer an opportunity for the acquiring party to tap into the future upside of ELV services in Malaysia,‖ UEM said in a statement. Special Builders operates a plant in Bandar Proton, Tanjung Malim in Perak. Its revenue comes mainly from selling scrap metal and parts from scrapped vehicles. (BT)

The absence of  Petronas from a high-level meeting to discuss a proposed stabilisation fund seems to suggest that the establishment of a mechanism to compensate Tenaga Nasional Bhd for purchasing gas at market rates is not likely to be put in place soon. According to Petronas, the company was not invited to the 24 Sep meeting held by the Economic Council. Without the stabilisation fund industry observers point out that it would delay the import of liquefied natural gas that is needed to make up for the shortfall in local supply. (Financial Daily)

The total cost of vehicle ownership is among the lowest in the Asean region according to a comparative analysis by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI). In a statement yesterday, MITI said the total cost of vehicle ownership includes the cost of the vehicle, petrol, insurance and road tax. The price of subsidised RON95 in Malaysia is RM1.90 per litre compared to RM3.80 in Thailand, RM3.35 in Indonesia, RM5.10 in Singapore, RM3.60 in Vietnam and RM3.20 in the Philippines. Average road tax and insurance is also among the lowest at RM398 for road tax and RM3,062 for insurance. This compares to RM2,756 and RM7,960 respectively in Singapore, RM1,837 and RM4,593 in Indonesia, RM459 and RM6,736 in Thailand and RM306 and RM2,847 in the Philippines. (Bernama)

Malaysia's life insurance business is expected to grow by 9-10% next year on strong demand from the middle class, coupled with brisk economic growth. A spokesman for the Life Insurance Association of Malaysia (Liam) said the growth would be helped by fresh graduates buying insurance for saving and protection purposes. (BT, Bernama)

Malaysia expects to wrap up discussions on timber exports with the European Union soon, in a bid to ensure timber products from the country will have a smooth entry in to the European market. Products made from legally-harvested timber will be accorded "green lane treatment" for exports into the EU under the agreement. (StarBiz)

Newspapers' reach has breached free-to-air (FTA) television for the first time according to Carat Media Services. While FTA TV reach was flat in the first half year, Pay TV has shown improvement. The bigger issue about newspapers is growing readership coupled with declining reading time. (Financial Daily)

Export-Import Bank of Malaysia (Exim Bank) has extended credit facilities of US$95m to PT Lintas Marga Sedaya to part finance the development of the Cikampek-Palimanan toll road in Indonesia. The bank, together with 21 other banking and financial institutions signed credit facilities agreement worth RM2.9bn in Jakarta to finance the Cikampet-Palimanan toll highway that requires a total investment of RM4.15bn. (BT)

Astro IPO at RM3 per share Astro has set its IPO price at RM3 for retail, institutional, cornerstone and bumiputra investors. It will raise some RM4.6bn, making it ASEAN’s third largest IPO this year. At RM3, Astro will be valued at RM15.8bn. In comparison, Astro All-Asia Networks was taken private at RM8.3bn. (StarBiz)

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