Friday, 18 April 2014

Shell reports CZK 302m loss on CZK 20.6bn in ČR in 2011

ČTK |
19 September 2012

Prague, Sept 18 (CTK) - Shell Czech Republic, which has a wide chain of domestic petrol stations, sank into a Kc302.4m loss last year from a Kc224m profit in 2010 and its sales dropped by 6 percent to Kc20.6bn, according to the company's annual report.

Shell was negatively affected by low demand for fuels and a fall in the volume of the processed oil. Other chains of petrol stations also report a decline.

Sales of oils, lubricants and aircraft fuels also contributed to the company's revenues so the wide portfolio of its activities helped a bit.

Low demand for petrol and diesel oil caused an outflow of clients last year so petrol stations had to cut their margins to be able to compete with rivals. The trend continues this year on record-high fuel prices which in some places move around Kc40 a litre.

Other chains of petrol stations also grappled with falling sales and profits last year. Benzina registered roughly a Kc100m decrease in profit and Lukoil's loss deepened to over Kc40m.

"Almost everyone has problems," Association of Czech Petrol Stations (SCS) chairman Ivan Indracek told CTK.

Smaller chains like Tank Ono, which offers fuels several crowns cheaper than large brands, are an exception. Tank Ono had over a Kc26m profit last year and Robin Oil raised net profit by Kc10m to Kc77m.

Large companies like Shell and Benzina have stressed several times that growing imports of untaxed fuels are causing them problems.

Tax evasions allow some petrol stations to sell petrol at prices which for the other companies are below their cost, Indracek said.

He believes that the state should punish tax evasions. "But the state has more or less resigned on this role because despite a lot of statements, tax evasions are not falling but rather growing," he added.

Petrol stations operators have been asking the government for a long time to cut excise duty on diesel oil. After its increase in 2010, drivers of some international hauliers look for cheaper diesel oil in the neighbouring countries. However, Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek rejects a cut in the excise tax.

Diesel oil consumption in the Czech Republic has been more or less stagnating in the last few years. Nearly 4 million tonnes of diesel oil were used in the country last year.

Petrol consumption decreased by some 4 percent to 1.8 million tonnes last year and the falling trend continues.

Shell had 183 petrol stations in the Czech Republic at the end of last year. It also owns 16 percent in refinery Ceska rafinerska.

Benzina runs the highest number of petrol stations in the Czech Republic (over 330).

The server Ceska pozice reported that the state-run crude oil transporter Mero has agreed with Shell to buy its stake in TAL, a pipeline which carries crude oil from Trieste, Italy, and to which the Czech pipeline IKL is connected in Germany's Ingolstadt.

The server said that Mero may get a 6 percent stake in TAL for EUR15m (around Kc372m) unless the current shareholders with the preemptive right express interest in it. Shell now has to offer the stake for the same price to the seven shareholders with the preemptive right who have 30 days to make a decision, the server said.

Mero CEO Jaroslav Pantucek and strategic development director Libor Lukasek, who held talks with Shell, declined to comment on the deal. "I can neither confirm or deny your information," Pantucek told the server citing the pledge of secrecy.

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