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Dana Gas returns to profit in Q1

Dubai, May 13, 2010

Dana Gas, the Gulf's only listed natural gas company, returned to profit in the first quarter with a net profit of Dh33 million ($8.98 million) due to higher oil and gas output and rising energy prices.

The company said it was confident about its full-year result and repeated its call for oil and gas production at its Egyptian unit to rise by 20 per cent in the year.

'Our results are in line with our plans and expectation for the quarter and we remain confident about the full-year results subject to market prices for LPG and condensate and the results of our exploration drilling,' finance chief James Dewar told Reuters.

The Abu Dhabi-listed firm posted a net loss of Dh32 million in the first quarter of last year. Analyst Q1 forecasts ranged from Dh39 million to Dh48 million.

Comprehensive income for the quarter -- which includes gains on investments -- lept to Dh173 million compared to a Dh32 million loss a year ago due to the rising book value of the group's investment in Hungarian energy firm MOL.

The increase was booked directly to the company's equity, Dana said. MOL's share price has increased 70 per cent in the past 12 months, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Revenue increased by Dh411 million for the quarter, boosted by about Dh95 million due to rising energy prices and by about Dh70 million due to increased output of oil and gas, Dewar said.

In the Kurdistan region of Iraq, the company began gas production through the first train of its LPG plant in the past several days, with production of liquified gas to begin in the third quarter, Dana said in a statement.

In May 2009, Dana said it was part of a UAE and European consortium that includes MOL and Austria's OMV planning to pump enough gas from Iraq's Kurdistan region to kick-start the estimated $10 billion Nabucco pipeline project to supply Europe.

Dana Gas shares have fallen 5.2 per cent so far this year after a 59.3 per cent gain in 2009.

Dana Gas is based in the northern emirate of Sharjah, one of the seven members of the UAE. – Reuters




Tags: abu dhabi | Dubai | Dana Gas | profit | Q1 |

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