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October 21, 2009

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Home » Business » Energy

Huaneng powers to robust Q3 profit

HUANENG Power International Inc, China's largest electricity provider, swung to a third-quarter profit due to more output from new operating units, two tariff hikes in the second half of 2008 and lower coal costs.

Huaneng, like main competitors Datang Power and Huadian Power, has profited as China's power generation has risen for four months in a row on hotter-than-usual weather and after government economic stimulus measures helped put assembly lines back in motion.

China's power usage in September rose 10.24 percent from a year earlier - the first time in 16 months that the country has posted double-digit growth in power consumption - underscoring the strength of the economic recovery.

Huaneng's power plants, which have a generation capacity of more than 39,000 megawatts, are mostly located in China's fast-growing coastal areas.

Huaneng said separately that it would invest 5 billion yuan (US$732 million) together with its parent firm to develop a joint venture nuclear power project in China.

"From the current and long-term perspectives, a nuclear project has a relatively better return," Huaneng said in a statement. "This capital contribution provides a good opportunity for the company to enter the nuclear sector, which is consistent with the development strategy and long-term benefit of the company."

Huaneng's third-quarter profit totaled 2.17 billion yuan for July-September, according to Chinese accounting standards. This figure compared with a restated 2.15 billion yuan net loss a year earlier, a record quarterly loss.

The result exceeded a consensus estimate for a 1.57 billion yuan profit, according to three estimates from Thomson Reuters.

Huaneng's strong profit contrasted with anaemic results from some of its international peers, including Duke Energy Co in the United States and France's Edison. Many US and European power firms see no signs of a near-term rebound in demand.


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