PetroVietnam Earnings Up 2 Percent

Despite lower than expected output on certain overseas operations, Viet Nam Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam) on June 19 reported a revenue of 84.6 trillion VND (5.3 billion USD) in the first half of the year, up 2.8 percent over the same period in 2006.

The State-owned enterprise hopes to generate over 168 trillion VND by the end of the year.

In the first two quarters, the company produces 11.73 million tonnes of gas and oil, which executives consider strong but below expectations. The figure represents 47.3 percent of the company's 2007 target.

"The amount of gas and oil produced was still large. We could have exploited more but we didn't because it would have affected oil and gas fields," Tran Ngoc Canh, general director of Petroietnam, was quoted as saying in a press release issued on June 19.

Despite the shortcomings, PetroVietnam signed four contracts during the first six months of the year to explore other offshore oil fields in Viet Nam. The company now has nine exploration contracts in place with foreign partners.

PetroVietnam also reported its service sector developed well over the two quarters with 16 trillion VND (1 billion USD) in revenues generated through these activities. The figure represents about 19 percent of the company's overall earnings.

"PetroVietnam hopes to become interdisciplinary. We will develop into many different fields including finance, banking and securities," said Dinh La Thang, PetroVietnam chairman.

The company hopes services will account for 50 percent of its overall revenue by 2025.

Since January, PetroVietnam has invested 18.9 trillion VND in new and ongoing projects. It also contributed 30 trillion VND (1.8 billion USD) to the State budget in the six months, down nearly 10 percent year-on-year.

Oil and gas exports in the first two quarters reached 7.68 million tonnes, about 46.5 percent of the company's annual target. The oil and gas output for the second half of 2007 is expected to reach 13.15 million tonnes.