Category: Commodities

EV Battery Race

Minister of state-owned enterprises Erick Thohir, minister of foreign affairs Retno Marsudi, and minister of trade M Lutfi were in China late last week to meet various companies in the country related to the ambitious US$5 billion partnership with Indonesian Battery Company (IBC)—-a consortium of state companies Aneka Tambang (ANTM), Pertamina, PLN, and MIND ID. 

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The EV Disruption & Tsingshan

Tsingshan’s announcement of a disruptive technology converting nickel ore into nickel sulphate—-precursor for electric vehicle battery—-via matte has largely been considered responsible for recent correction of nickel price from as high as US$19,689 on February 22 to as low as US$15,907 per ton on March 9. While the technology will likely change the supply side of nickel sulphate, question remains as to whether it will be fast enough to cope with the growing demand side.

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FY20 Results of Adaro

Coal miner Adaro Energy (ADRO) booked a net profit of US$146.93 million in 2020, dropped 63.6% from US$404.19 million in 2019, as revenue declined 27% year on year (y/y) to US$2.53 billion and gross profit dropped 40% y/y to US$577 million. Operating profit also fell 54% y/y to US$285 million. Operating EBITDA declined 27% y/y to US$883 billion.

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Turnaround of Chandra Asri

Petrochemical firm Chandra Asri Petrochemical (TPIA) booked a net profit of US$51.5 million in 2020, surged 121% from US$23.6 million in 2019, thanks to an income tax benefit. Its revenue was maintained at US$1.8 billion, equal to US$1.88 million in 2019. TPIA reported lower average selling prices across all products last year, and then it increased sales volume both scale and capacity.

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Outliers of 2020: Geo Energy Resources

Unlike other coal producers, SGX-listed Geo Energy Resources Ltd, which operates some coal mines in Kalimantan Island, recorded net profit of US$95.1 million last year against loss of US$47.7 million in 2019. The Company generated sales revenue of US$306.8 million last year, an increase of 23% from 2019, thanks to significantly higher production and sales volume.

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FY20 Results: Plantation

Plantations firms reported a jump in profits last year on the back of higher Crude Palm Oil (CPO) prices and lower costs and expenses. Astra Agro Lestari (AALI) earlier reported its net profit skyrocketed 268% year on year (y/y) to Rp894 billion in 2020, supported by an 11.7% rise in revenue and a 27.8% rise in its averaged CPO prices (Rp8,548 per kilogram).

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Stronger 2020 of Vale

Nickel miner Vale Indonesia (INCO) booked a net profit of US$82.8 million in 2020; it grew 45.6% from US$57.4 million in 2019. EBITDA reached US$273 million, mainly driven by higher production and shipments of nickel and cost-efficiency. Profit before tax reached US$104.6 million, grew 16.8% year on year (y/y).

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The second Smelter Grade Alumina (SGA)

PT Bintan Alumina Indonesia (BAI), subsidiary of China’s Nanshan Aluminium, is scheduled to start commercial operation of its first smelter grade alumina (SGA) in the Galang-Batang Special Economic Zone (SEZ), Bintan Regency, Riau Islands province, next month. This is the second SGA in Indonesia after Harita Group-Hongqiao’s unit in West Kalimantan province. 

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Outliers of 2020: Bumitama Agri

Bumitama Agri Ltd, SGX-listed palm oil company co-owned by Harita Group (Lim Gunawan Hariyanto Family) and IOI Corp, recorded net profit of Rp1.13 trillion last year, jumped by 64.1% from 2019, thanks to substantially stronger performance in the second half of the year on higher average prices of crude palm oil (CPO). 

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Tuban Refinery Progress

People are talking about the Rp8 billion that landowners have received in exchange for their property on which Pertamina’s New Grass Root Refinery (NGRR) of Tuban will stand. “Around 225 people will receive Rp8 billion for their land. That’s correct,” Pertamina’s President Director Nicke Widyawati confirmed on Wednesday (Feb. 17). So hundreds of residents of Sumurgeneng village in Tuban are suddenly cash rich. 

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