(Hong Kong, 28 April 2020) Shenzhen Expressway Company Limited (SSE stock code: 600548; HKEX stock code: 00548) (hereinafter referred to as "Shenzhen Expressway", "the Company", or "the Group") has announced its unaudited results for the first quarter of 2020 ("Reporting Period"). The report shows that in the first quarter of 2020, Shenzhen Expressway recorded an operating income of approximately RMB451 million, a net profit of about -RMB133 million, and earnings per share of -RMB0.061.
In the first quarter of 2020, the COVID-19 epidemic had a significant impact on the Group's production and business activities. In terms of the tollway business, the toll revenue from the toll roads operated or invested by the Group generally declined year on year due to the implementation of the toll-free policy issued by local governments and the Ministry of Transport during the epidemic. The projects under construction were delayed by the shortage of raw material supply and other factors. Waste disposal and clean energy businesses were also affected by the epidemic, with a reduction in the volume of kitchen waste disposal, and a delay in the production, delivery and sales of wind power.
Shenzhen Expressway adopted active anti-epidemic measures in the face of difficulties. In addition to safely resuming projects under construction earlier, the Company increased production efficiency by strengthening production and quality management and leveraging innovative technology and strove to complete the projects on schedule and effectively control costs. Bioland Environmental actively increased the collection and transportation of organic waste, carried out technical research to enhance production efficiency, and cut production costs to improve business performance. It contributed RMB37.43 million in revenue during the Reporting Period. To minimise the impact of the epidemic, Baotou Nanfeng constantly refined its fan overhaul and maintenance programs, improved the quality of wind farm operation and management, and ensured the normality of operation and production activities. It generated on-grid power of about 146,791 MWh in the first quarter, contributing RMB39.03 million in revenue. Besides, the Group maintained communication with the transport authority on relevant supporting policies and will closely follow up on subsequent arrangements.
During the Reporting Period, the Group recognised operating costs of RMB503 million, a year-on-year decrease of 25.70%, mainly due to the decline in vehicular flow of toll roads, the reduction in depreciation and amortisation resulting from the lowering of unit amortisation for Jihe Expressway and other sections, and the commercial housing development cost of Guilong project carried forward from the same period last year.
After offsetting the "gains on fair value changes - gains on fair value change of foreign exchange swap instrument", the Group's integrated financial costs during the Reporting Period amounted to RMB167 million, an increase of 28.75% year on year, mainly due to the expansion of interest cost resulting from the increase in interest-bearing liabilities from last year.
The Management of Shenzhen Expressway believes that the COVID-19 epidemic has a certain impact on the Company's performance in the short term but will have little impact on medium- and long-term development. On the one hand, the Group will actively seek projects that are in line with its development strategy and strive for market expansion through a combination of endogenous growth and M&A deals. On the other hand, the Group will further enhance production efficiency and adopt a variety of measures to cut costs. The Company will work to complete the projects on schedule and minimise the negative impact of the epidemic.
Recently, a range of ministries and commissions have introduced multiple favourable policies to accelerate the construction of major projects. With the steady implementation of major infrastructure plans and other policies, the Company will be presented with opportunities to further develop its tollway and environmental businesses. The Company will continue to focus on its two core businesses, transportation & urban infrastructure and general environmental protection. It will further integrate itself into regional development through transportation construction projects and contribute to the building of a strong transportation network that closely connects all cities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. Also, it will push deeper into specific environmental protection areas, actively make new industrial investments, and further enhance its competitiveness. These will promote the Group's sustainable development and therefore generate greater value for shareholders.