By Peter Egwuatu
TOTAL Nigeria Plc has assured its shareholders of improved performance in 2017, as it re-strategises to consolidate in the downstream petroleum sector.
Notwithstanding the economic down turn experienced in the financial year 2016, the company declared a total dividend of N5.8 billion, translating to N17.00 per share.
Chairman of Total Nigeria Plc, Mr. Stanislas Mittelman, while addressing shareholders at the 39th Annual General Meeting, AGM, held in Lagos, weekend, said that the company will re-strategise operations and invest more in the downstream sector in order to continue to maintain the market leadership.
According to him “2016 was a year of economic and social challenges. Despite these challenges, the company’s turnover increased by 40 per cent to N291 billion from N208 billion in 2015; profit after tax increased by 266 per cent to N14.8 billion from N4.05 billion in 2015; interest expense was N0.9 billion and 52 per cent lower than the previous year mainly due to a net positive cash position which has arisen as a result of our inability to source dollars.”
He explained that Total Nigeria was able to source dollars during the first half of 2016 from Exploration and Production International Oil Companies, stressing that the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN had directed that this could no longer continue.
Mittelman, stressed that the company will continue to invest in the country as well as other African countries, adding that the emerging markets and developing countries are expected to fare better in 2017.
Commenting on the future, he said “We expect that 2017 will be a year that will provide Total Nigeria with opportunities to consolidate on our past achievements, re-strategise and reposition in accordance with the new global economic order while delivering value to our shareholders and other stakeholders.
Meanwhile, virtually all the shareholders who spoke at the meeting commended the Board and Management for the Stellar performance recorded in the year under review and encourage them to do better in the years ahead.