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PKN CEO expects record EBIT for 2006

3.1.2007 9:55
Autor: KBC/Patria

Mr. Chalupec CEO of PKN Orlen told Reuters in an interview yesterday that despite a weaker fourth quarter, PKN is seen to deliver a record year on the operating level after excluding the effects of negative goodwill on 2005 results. Chalupec added that market conditions in refining could prove to be tougher than last year, but the company should benefit from a more favourable environment for its petrochemicals business. From Mazeikiu Nafta the CEO hoped a positive contribution in 2007, however, revealing that it will highly depend on the pace at which the vacuum distillation unit will be rebuilt.

Regarding upstream investments Mr. Chalupec said that PKN currently looks at more than ten oil exploration projects but only 3-4 of them have a chance to be realized in 2007. If so, upstream CAPEX might exceed slightly exceed the planned USD 140m. Mr Chalupec added that the potential selling of their 19.6% Polkomtel stake could help significantly the financing of its CAPEX. Mr. Chalupec reiterated that PKN has in intention to sell its German retail operations in case of a satisfactory offer. He added however, that it could happen in 2H07 the earliest.

Our view: A record 2006 result is not a surprise for the market, both consensus EBIT (PLN 3.17bn) and KBCS’ forecast (PLN 3.59bn) is higher than respective figures for 2004 (PLN 2.75bn) and 2005 (PLN 3.06bn, after adjusting to one-offs). Regarding PKN’s 2007 outlook we also agree that it could be a more difficult year for refiners, but somewhat healthier for petchems. We expect negative contribution from Mazeikiu Nafta in 2007, seeing the commissioning of the repaired vacuum distillation unit only for 3Q07. Although the news on upstream expansion and the potential selling of Orlen Deutschland generated some speculation on the market, PKN’s positive price development yesterday was also due to the general positive sentiment on the oil market, we believe.

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