Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 24th 2015 Contents A18
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, August 24, 2015
Chairman of National Enter-
prises Ltd (NEL) Kenny Lue Chee
Lip said prudent management of
the companies portfolio was
responsible for its good perform-
ance is in a period of low oil and
In his report to shareholders at
the company s annual general
meeting, Lue Chee Lip said three
years ago the NEL board embarked
on a strategic plan that included
diversification of its investment
portfolio into other sectors includ-
ing power and utilities, financial
services and downstream energy;
strengthening of management;
monitoring performance of
investee companies and contribut-
ing to strategic direction; invest-
ment and management of cash
resources to generate better
returns; and increasing overall
shareholder value and long term
stability of earnings.
"NEL s results for 2015 are a
reflection of the management s
execution of that strategic plan
over the last three years, resulting
in significantly better earnings in
a period where oil and gas prices
have seen a significant reduction,"
"In November 2014, we closed
an investment in Pan West, LLC,
the owner of ten per cent of
Phoenix Park Gas Processors Ltd.
This was a joint bid by three insti-
tutions---the National Insurance
Board, The Unit Trust Corporation
and National Enterprises Ltd---with
each owning one third of Pan
"This investment of US$56 mil-
lion will generate good returns and,
along with our 2014 investment
of US$33 million in a ten per cent
shareholding in PowerGen,
increases our portfolio of investee
companies and thus our dividend
He said NEL s major subsidiary
and a significant contributor to its
earnings, Tringen, undertook a
major capital project, Energy Effi-
ciency Improvement Project
(EEIP), in the last quarter of 2014.
This resulted in significant down-
time and lower earnings.
The project was funded entirely
from internal cash and is expected
to improve production and energy
efficiency on Tringen s I plant,
contributing to better earnings
from 2015 onwards.
Lue Chee Lip said Tringen s
plant utilisation and production
continue to be affected by gas cur-
tailment issues on the Point Lisas
He also reported that in 2014
Cable and Wireless (CWC)
announced a proposed merger with
Columbus Communications. The
Telecommunications Authority of
T&T made approval conditional
on CWC agreeing, with NEL, to
divest its 49 per cent shareholding
He said: "A divestment and sus-
pension agreement was subse-
quently signed between CWC and
NEL, and this project is now
underway to look for a new strate-
gic partner for TSTT. Operationally,
2015 marked a very good year for
TSTT as it started the implemen-
tation of its VSEP plan and deliv-
ered a very good return as it
returned to profitability."
Lue Chee Lip told shareholders
that NEL recorded a profit of
$490.5 million for the year ended
March 31, 2015, compared to
$200.5 million the previous year.
This was an increase of 144.7 per
cent. Earnings per share was $0.80
compared to $0.32 for the prior
"TSTT returned to profitability
in 2015 contributing $108.6 million
to NEL compared to a loss of $226
million in 2014. This was driven
by improved operational perform-
ance after making VSEP provisions
in 2014," he said.
The Communication Workers Union
(CWU) is demanding that the Telecommu-
nications Authority of T&T (TATT) mandate
all subscription television providers rebate
customers for providing channels for which
they do not have intellectual property rights.
The union made the call in response to a
public advisory late last week in which TATT
stated that subscription television providers
must remove all channels for which they have
no intellectual property rights from their local
CWU said in a statement that "unscrupulous
providers" were charging subscribers for chan-
nels they were actually stealing from inter-
national providers of entertainment.
"This revelation is also an indictment against
TATT who is supposed to be the legally estab-
lished regulatory body," the union said, adding
that there is need for a comprehensive review
of the operations of TATT to ensure that they
provide timely regulatory oversight and inter-
vention on behalf of citizens as prescribed by
the Telecommunications Act.
The CWU said it is not satisfied that TATT
has fulfilled its role and functions like it is
supposed to. It said the agency s role is to
ensure that consumers in the telecommuni-
cations/ICT market receive value for money
and are subject to fair pricing arrangements.
TATT said its advisory is applicable to
providers who have not yet launched service,
including Massy Communications, Open Tele-
com and Digicel.
"All providers are working assiduously to
obtain alternative channels for consumer pack-
ages which will contribute to the overall view-
ership experience. This pull down and replace-
ment process has already commenced," TATT
The channels which will be affected are
those which are not available because rights
for them are not available to the Caribbean,
as well as those for which rights have not been
acquired by the provider.
TATT said it was justified in taking the
action to ensure T&T is in compliance with
international intellectual property treaties and
agreements to which it is a signatory.
The 16 channels which TATT said must be
removed by all subscription cable television
providers include ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, Encore
Western, MyTV33, TLC, USA Network, VH-
1 USA and WGN.
In response to the TATT directive, DirecTV
has published advertisements assuring its sub-
scribers that they have nothing to worry about.
In a newspaper advertisement, DirecTV said
all its programming is authorised and the
TATT order will not negatively affect its service.
CWU calls for rebate for
cable company customers
"NGC NGL also performed margin-
ally better in 2015".
NEL received its first full year earn-
ings from investment in a ten per cent
shareholding in PowerGen yielding $11.5
million in dividends, as well as dividends
from investments in First Citizens Bank
and Clico Investment Fund share shares.
The company s investment in Novem-
ber, 2014, in Pan West, LLC as a mem-
ber of a consortium with the NIB and
UTC, produced dividends of $9.8 mil-
lion for a four-month period.
"These positive increases were offset
by lower profitability from Tringen due
to plant downtime from its shutdown
for works associated with the Energy
Efficiency Improvement Project. This
project was funded entirely from inter-
nal funds, and therefore Tringen s final
dividends for the year ended December
31, 2014 will be paid to NEL after our
year end of March 31, 2015.
"TSTT also did not pay any interim
dividends, and will therefore pay a final
dividend in respect of the year ended
March 31, 2015 in NEL s financial year
2016. NGC NGL also produced higher
results than 2014 and NFM has also
reported improved earnings.
"Total dividend income was therefore
$318,028 compared to $305,014 in 2014,
an increase of 4.2 per cent," Lue Chee
Good results from prudent
Chairman of National Enterprises
Ltd Kenny Lue Chee Lip.
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