KUALA LUMPUR (June 10): Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) saw its net profit for the first quarter ended March 31, 2020 (1QFY20) fall by 54.53% year-on-year (y-o-y) following a RM402.8 million foreign exchange (forex) loss against the US dollar and yen.
In a bourse filing, TNB announced that its 1QFY20 net profit declined to RM717.9 million from RM1.55 billion in the corresponding quarter last year.
This translated into lower earnings per share of 12.62 sen from 27.38 sen previously.
Quarterly revenue declined by 12.01% y-o-y to RM11.65 billion from RM13.24 billion in the corresponding quarter last year.
In a breakdown of its results, TNB said the lower revenue was on the back of RM307.5 million rebate from the Imbalance Cost Pass-Through from the surcharge of RM1.37 billion posted in 1QFY19.
The utility giant said its net profit was hampered by a RM402.8 million forex loss, versus a RM207.5 million forex gain seen in the corresponding quarter last year.
It added that for its regulated business, it was able to maintain an approved return of RM965.9 million under the Incentive-Based Regulation framework.
"Given the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and the uncertainties in the global economic environment, the board of directors foresees prolonged challenges to the group's prospects for the financial year ending Dec 31, 2020. The group has taken the necessary measures to ensure the stability of its finances and operations," TNB said on its prospects.
In a separate statement, TNB said that electricity sales for 1QFY20 were stable at 27,938.2 gigawatt-hours (GWh) or RM11.78 billion, from the 28,471.1GWh or RM12.03 billion registered for 1QFY19.
Due to the seasonal dry spell in March, Peninsular Malaysia's power consumption did rise to an all-time high of 18,808 megawatts on March 10, which was then disrupted by the implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO).
As a result of the MCO, electricity usage in industrial and commercial sectors dropped by between 25% and 50%, while residential segment saw an increase of 20% to 50%.
Overall demand in 1QFY20 contracted by 1.9% before factoring the impact of Covid-19 and the MCO.
Electricity demand in May fell by 29% y-o-y from May last year. As such, electricity consumption is expected to drop by 7% to 15% y-o-y in 2020, on the back of the slowdown of activities in the commercial sector.
TNB president and chief executive officer Amir Hamzah Azizan said that as an essential services provider, TNB has a critical role in supporting the Malaysian government's efforts to revive the economy and assist those whose livelihoods are affected.
"Facilitating economic stimulus at this time should be made a priority. For TNB, even though we are facing a hit to our revenue collection, we can remain resilient due to a robust balance sheet.
"Giving more now to help the nation rise out of this economic slump is going to yield better times for all of us collectively," said.
As of noon market close, TNB shares were up 0.17% or two sen at RM11.92, valuing it at some RM68 billion.