Dalian Port to unload two berths

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 13 October, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 13 October, 2007, 12:00am

Dalian Port (PDA) will sell two container berths to its partly owned joint venture for 1.25 billion yuan as part of its promise in its initial public offering in 2005.

The company expects to book a gain of 221 million yuan from the sale but it will not pay special dividends, according to its joint company secretary Arthur Lee Kin-yu.

Dalian Port will spend about 20 per cent of the sale proceeds or 250 million yuan to repay bank loans that the company took out to build the two berths.

The remainder will go to funding port projects.

The buyer, Dalian Port Container Terminal, is 35 per cent owned by Dalian Port Container, which in turn is 91 per cent owned by Dalian Port.

Other shareholders include PSA International of Singapore, Cosco Pacific and APM Terminals, a subsidiary of Maersk.

The two berths, valued at 1.233 billion yuan, contributed 3.5 million yuan to last year's profit, Dalian Port said. 'The valuation is very high compared with other listed terminal companies in Hong Kong,' a transport analyst said.

Dalian Port had indicated in its listing prospectus that it agreed to sell No 13 to No 16 container terminals at Dayao Bay to the joint venture.

Last year, No 13 and No 14 terminals underwent trial runs before commercial operations started in July.

No 15 and No 16 container berths are under construction and would be sold after their commercial launch.

Dalian Port is an integrated terminal operator which runs container ports, vehicle ports and oil terminals in Dalian, a city in the northeast Liaoning province.

In the first half, its net profit increased 28 per cent to 420 million yuan on a 32 per cent growth in revenue.

The port operator formed a joint venture with China Shipping Terminal Development and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha to develop Dayaowan phase three in July.

The five-berth facility can handle three million 20-foot equivalent units per year, with the first two berths coming on stream in the second half next year.

Dalian Port also co-operated with PetroChina on a proposed 700 million yuan crude oil terminal project with designed capacity of 20 million tonnes per year.

Shares in Dalian Port dropped 2.34 per cent to HK$7.52 yesterday before the company made the announcement.

The stock has more than doubled this year.

IPO pledge

The port operator will sell two container berths for 1.25 billion yuan

Percentage of the sale proceeds that will go to repaying debt: 20%