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Borneo, Sarawak, Sarawak agriculture, Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE), Sarawak Economy, Sarawakian

Sarawak Plantation to register RM100mln pretax profit

SARAWAK Plantation Bhd (SPB) is expected to register a pretax profit of RM100 million for 2011.

This is an increase of almost 100 per cent from RM52 million in 2010!

In case you didn’t know, the State Government holds substantial shareholdings in SPB through the State Financial Secretary (SFS) and other state institutions. You see, SPB was specially incorporated as the vehicle company for the privatisation of the Sarawak Land Development Board’s (SLDB’s) assets.

So that means SPB’s excellent financial performance last year is great news for the State’s coffers too.

SPB Managing Director Datuk Hamden Ahmad said he is confident the company would be able to achieve the target as it has already achieved RM83 million before tax as of September 2011.

“I believe we can record another RM20 million or more in the last quarter of 2011 (October to December),” he is quoted as saying.

He added that the crude palm oil (CPO) price is expected to remain around RM3,000 to RM3,200 per metric tonne this year, so the outlook for the industry is positive.

Datuk Hamden also called on locals to take up jobs at various SPB estates in the State to ease a workers shortage.

Harvesters are paid between RM38 and RM48 per metric tonne of fruit depending on the height of the palm trees, while maintenance workers earn between RM25 and RM30 per day.

The company currently has around 2,500 workers in estates, with about 1,000 for harvesting and the rest for field maintenance work such as weeding, trimming and manuring.

“We are facing a worker shortage of about 100 harvesters and 250 maintenance workers,” said Hamden.

If locals took up the jobs on offer, SPB would not have to hire foreign workers.

SPB has 15 oil palm estates — nine in Miri, four in Mukah and one each in Tulai and Sri Aman — with a total land bank of some 60,000 hectares.

The company aims to increase this to 100,000 hectares in the long-term.

This is because the palm oil industry is one of the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy’s (SCORE’s) 10 priority industries.

In case you didn’t know, SPB is the only oil palm seed producer in Sarawak.

It owns and operates a seed garden with annual production around 1.4 million seeds. SPB targets to produce five million high quality seeds by 2014.

These high quality seeds are certified by SIRIM and are licensed for sale by the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB).

Apart from providing seeds for internal use, SPB also sells its seeds to other plantations and smallholders.

The Borneo Post’s article:

Sarawak Plantation to register pre-tax profit of 100 million

By Ting Tieng Hee

KUCHING: Sarawak Plantation Bhd (Sarawak Plantation) is expected to register a profit of RM100 million before tax for 2011, which will be a increase of almost 100 per cent, from RM52 million in 2010.

Its managing director Datuk Hamden Ahmad said he was confident that the company would be able to achieve this target as it had already achieved RM83 million (before tax) as September 2011.

“I believe we can record another RM20 million or more in the last quarter of 2011 (October to December),” he said.

Hamden attributed the good growth in profit to the good price of crude palm oil and palm kernel last year.

“We anticipate the crude oil palm (CPO) price to sustain around RM3,000 to RM3,200 per metric tonne this year,” he added.

Meanwhile, Hamden urged the locals to take up jobs at various Sarawak Plantation estates in the state to ease workers shortage.

“We hope very much that more local people will get work in our estates, especially in terms of harvesting and maintenance work. We don’t have enough local workers, so much so that we have to hire foreign workers from Indonesia,” he disclosed.

The company’s present workforce in the estates was around 2,500, with about 1,000 people for harvesting and the rest for field maintenance work such as weeding, trimming and manuring.

“We are facing a worker shortage of about 100 harvesters and 250 maintenance workers,” said Hamden.

According to him, the foreign harvesters were paid between RM38 and RM48 per metric tonne of the fruit depending on the height of the palm trees while the maintenance workers earned between RM25 and RM30 per day. Locals were paid the same rate.

The total area of Sarawak Plantation’s 15 estates (nine in Miri, four in Mukah and one each in Tulai and Sri Aman) now stood at 60,000 hectares. The company also aimed to increase its hectarage to 100,000 hectares in the long term.

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