CHINA Cosco Holdings, the Hong Kong-listed arm of state-owned China Ocean Shipping, sunk back into the red in the first quarter with a loss of CNY1.9 billion (US$300.6 million), similar to the loss made at the same time last year.
Nonetheless, the company reported an annual profit of CNY235.5 million for the whole of last year driven by asset sales while recording that first quarter revenue was down 6.7 per cent year on year to CNY14.2 billion.
Most losses came from the dry bulk division, where volumes were down 24 per cent in the first quarter compared to the first three months of 2013.
Shipping volumes rose seven per cent in the containership division to 2.1 million TEU, but revenues for the unit grew by only 1.8 per to CNY10 billion in the first quarter. China Cosco operates 179 box ships totalling 843,705 TEU.
Declines in volumes were recorded for all cargoes except grain, with volumes up 17 per cent to 5.8 million tonnes.
Costs soared 48 per cent to CNY777.2 million during the reporting period, and pushed up largely because of the yuan's recent depreciation against the US dollar.
Another positive development was the decline in operating costs to CNY13.5 billion for the period ending March from CNY15.3 billion in the first quarter of 2013.
Source : HKSG.