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30.05.2006 Business & Finance

BOPP records loss of 8.8 billion cedis


Takoradi, May 30, GNA - The Benso Oil Palm Plantation (BOPP) recorded a revenue loss of 8.8 billion cedis due to a fall in the world market price of crude palm oil in 2005.

As a result of this, the management of BOPP has decided to defer payment of dividend for 2005 to shareholders.

Mr Ishmael Evans Yamson, Chairman of BOPP, announced this at the second Annual General Meeting of the company in Takoradi on Tuesday. He said, "Sales volume growth of 14 per cent was achieved in 2005, while average world market price dropped 12.5 per cent against the previous year".

Mr Yamson said, "This led to an average price loss of 434,300 cedis for every metric tonnes of crude palm oil sold".

He said dividend to shareholders has consistently been paid on annual basis over the past 16 years and distribution to shareholders was based on the level of profitability.

Mr Yamson said operating profit for 2005 registered "Negative" 2.7 billion cedis (-2.7) compared to "Positive" 719 million cedis for 2004. He said management of the company realizing the threat posed by the decline in world market price of crude palm oil implemented cost saving measures, which resulted in operating cost savings of 5 per cent on prior year.

Mr Yamson said, "This was, however, not enough to offset the huge price variance of 8.8 billion cedis" adding, "Further cost saving measures have been planned for 2006".

He said a number of capital investment projects were undertaken in 2005 to upgrade the factory milling capacity to 30 metric tonnes per hour to improve factory oil recovery enhancement programme.

Mr Yamson said these included the construction of a 100 million cedi cooling pond, the installation of a new 1.09 billion cedi oil recovery sludge centrifuge and a 497 million cedi steam boiler capacity upgraded to improve steam generation for production and power generation.

He said the company would continue to replant oil palms with early bearing, high yielding disease resistant seedlings and construct planting terraces to improve yield potential of the soils as well as expand total land area planted.

The Chairman and all the directors of the company were re-elected.