Guangzhou Shipyard International Co's earnings this year will be plagued by a lower export tax rebate rate for shipbuilding, possible dwindling of container manufacturing and steel-structure construction business. The H-share company reported a 67 per cent tumble in net profit to 33.2 million yuan (about HK$30.97 million) for last year. Vice-chairman Liang Qian said he was confident the company would reverse the trend of falling profit - despite growing turnover - in recent years, but he could not tell when. Mr Liang said the company would continue to control costs this year, including a 10 per cent cut in staff and shortening of the shipbuilding period. Director and chief accountant Tao Quan said strengthening of the existing businesses was the key to revival, not cost-cutting measures. Asked about earnings prospects this year, Mr Tao said: 'The shipbuilding business should have a more substantial increase. If more orders come through for the container manufacturing division in the second half, it is hoped the division will achieve flat growth. 'For the steel construction division, we are awaiting the result of some new projects. Business volume this year remains an unknown.' The company would book profits for six ships to be delivered for export this year. Mr Tao said the company lost 46 million yuan due to the reduction of the export rebate rate on ship exports last year and the figure would increase 10 per cent this year. The company planned to reduce the business volume of its container building division by 20 per cent this year, from last year's 37,400 teu (20 ft equivalent units) to avoid damages amid price-cutting competition.